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Ruchi Soya enters Karnataka market with Sunrich brand of sunflower oil
Wednesday, 09 April, 2014, 08 : 00 AM [IST]
Our Bureau, Bengaluru
Ruchi Soya Industries Ltd forayed into the Karnataka market with its premium refined sunflower oil brand Sunrich. The company is one of the leaders in the edible oils space, with a retail penetration of about seven lakh outlets.

The company is gearing up to take its share of the sunflower oil market in the southern state to 10% by 2015 and to 15% by 2016. It aims leverage the strength of Sunrich’s unique selling proposition (clearer, lighter and healthier).

Food cooked in Sunrich absorbs up to 15 per cent less oil compared to other sunflower oils. The oil undergoes a seven-stage refinery process vis-a-vis the five mandated by the industry. Sunrich is fortified with vitamins A, D and E.

The brand, which was already launched in Andhra Pradesh, would later enter the Tamil Nadu market. Sunflower oil’s share in South India is 50%. In Tamil Nadu, its share is 35%. Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh hold a 33% share each, while Kerala’s share is 2%.  

Sunflower oil, is the fourth most-used vegetable oil as a cooking medium in the world, and its consumption has increased in India too.

The growth of India’s sunflower oil market is driven by the rise in income levels, increasing expenditure, better living standards and growing health consciousness.

The market in India is valued over Rs 180 billion, of which South India’s share is  around 70 per cent. Its compound annual growth rate (CAGR) between 2013-14 and 2016-17 was estimated to be around 10 per cent.

“Sunrich is the first step towards establishing a dominant presence in the sunflower oil segment in the country. The effort is to make Sunrich a preferred choice among Indian families by providing them unbeatable value and a best-in-class product at a best-in-class price,” said Satendra Aggarwal, choef operating officer, Ruchi Soya Industries Ltd.

“With this launch, our intent is to take our share for Sunrich to 10 per cent, and then to 15 per cent in the next two or three years,” he reiterated, adding that the firm was looking at tripling its distribution footprint for the brand.

“At present, India is able to meet less than 20 per cent of its demand for sunflower seeds from the domestic market, while the remainder comes through imports,” Aggarwal said.

Currently, the global sunflower oil production is estimated to be over 15 million tonne annually. Of this, a majority is produced by Ukraine and Russia. Other producers include Argentina, France, Romania, Hungary, China, India and the United States of America.

“Indian states like Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Bihar, Odisha and Tamil Nadu are emerging as major hubs for sunflower seed production. We have great strengths in terms of infrastructure and distribution channels in South India to make this new product a success,” stated Ajay Malik, vice-president (south), popular division, Ruchi Soya Industries Ltd.

“Our extensive research reveals that consumers are health-conscious. Sunrich offers both health and taste at an affordable price point,” said Alok Mahajan, head, marketing, popular division, Ruchi Soya Industries Ltd.
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