23rd December 2019, New Delhi: In a bid to support the Indian government’s movement ‘Operation Greens’, and to make available high-quality tomato products, at an economical price throughout the year, Kagome Foods India (KFI) is working actively with farmers set up an integrated value chain for tomatoes.
In February last year, the Government of India rolled out ‘Operation Greens’, for price stabilization and integrated development of Tomato, Onion and Potato value chain.
Of the TOP crops, tomatoes present the greatest challenge, owing to a much lower shelf life, and higher risk of damage during storage, handling, and transportation. Kagome, Japan’s No. 1 Tomato Company has set up its wholly-owned subsidiary in India, with an aim to usher in a Tomato Revolution, by creating a comprehensive new integrated seed to table value chain for tomatoes.
India presents a huge opportunity for tomato processing. Processed tomato products account for less than 1% of the total tomato consumption in the country, whereas this number is 75% for countries like the US. Driven by its motto of Offering Global Quality Products at Local Prices, Kagome Foods India is collaborating with local farmers in Nashik for developing a new value chain for tomato processing by:
ü Supplying them with specialized, processing specific seeds, and other agri inputs
ü Reducing farmer workload and cultivation costs, through the elimination of stakes and introduction of mulch films and providing them precise cultivation guidance
ü Buying back the harvested tomatoes at a fixed annual price, ensuring assured returns to farmers
The company’s concerted efforts are resulting in high yield, high-quality tomatoes, produced at a low cost. Through their work, Kagome Foods India has improved the lives of 200 farmer partners, with a plan to take this number to 1,000 over the next few years.
Besides farmers, Kagome also works with primary processing partners, to offer guidelines on the best tomato processing equipment and their operation.
KFI’s seed to table value chain has resulted in the development of a Tomato Products Portfolio that is preservative-free and offers Global Quality at Local Price. Leading this portfolio is its signature product, Crushed Tomatoes. Rich red colour, fresh flavour and a chunky texture, along with consistent taste and price throughout the year make Crushed Tomatoes ideal for extensive use in the foodservice kitchens. Crushed Tomatoes can be used in a wide range of tomato-based applications like Makhani and Kadhai based dishes, Pizzas, Pastas, Tomato Soup, Shorba and more. Kagome Crushed Tomatoes add taste and freshness to food, just like raw tomatoes.
Talking about the untapped market potential of processed tomato in India, Rohit Bhatla, MD at Kagome Foods India said, “India is the second-largest producer and consumer of Tomatoes in the world with a production of 20 million tonnes. Processed tomato products account for less than 1% of India’s total consumption of tomatoes, presenting a huge opportunity to Kagome Foods India, while in the developed countries like the US, processed tomato consumption is in excess of 75%.
The food processing sector has enormous potential to propel all round development, given its entire footprint across agriculture, industry and services. It can lead to gainful employment opportunities and put purchasing power in the hands of the people in both rural and urban regions, which is what Kagome Foods India is driving, through our Tomato Revolution.”