Britannia goes premium with chocolate biscuit

Amrita Nair Ghaswalla Mumbai | Updated on January 18, 2018

Ali Harris Shere, Vice-President, Marketing, Britannia Industries

‘Pure Magic Deuce is a disruptive innovation’

Eighteen months of research and many iterations later, biscuit major Britannia Industries had a new find: A fusion of chocolate and crisp biscuit in its new offering was not just a fresh twist on the traditional biscuit. The contemporary find would set the benchmark for more delectable offerings from the company.

“We routinely do many innovations with our biscuit portfolio,” Ali Harris Shere, Vice-President, Marketing, Britannia Industries, told BusinessLine.

“In some cases, we extend the variants. This will be especially true in something that we know really well, like a Good Day variant. We also look at incremental innovation. Then there is disruptive innovation.”

Shere is referring to the company’s premium biscuit Pure Magic Deuce, made available in an unprecedented product format. A little help from Aasted, a consolidated and family-owned company in Denmark that is into chocolate, bakery and confectionery, and Jensen 1000, a super compact chocolate moulding line, helped Britannia mould its biscuits with a slab of chocolate.

“Though similar products exist in other parts of the world, it is new to India,” Shere said. “We got the technology from Denmark, and set up a line in our new factory. The R&D centre we set up in Bengaluru last year helped us get the competency and capability to bring about a new format to the country.”

Product variants

As an ingredient, the company was dealing with chocolate for the first time. “We realised that there would be lot of work from the product point of view, as also from the supply chain side....,” Shere said. And then came another realisation. “We realised that this breakthrough innovation could become the bedrock for many more,” Shere said. “Now that we have been able to create a pipeline, we can push more products of a similar nature,” he said.

‘Bridge products’

Indian companies, taking a cue from multinationals, are looking at a third type of savoury category called ‘bridge snacks’, which offer local taste and flavour, with a western product format. Marking the foray into ‘bridge products’, Britannia's biscuit with a slab of chocolate underwent many development stages before the company realised that’s the way to go.

“To get the product right was important and we wanted to balance the biscuit and the chocolate and not let either product dominate. So we played around with different percentages to get the taste right,” said Shere.

The company was also looking to premiumise its biscuits. “Chocolate is a premium category and the average price is ₹800-1,000 a kg. The average price for biscuit is ₹100 a kg. The task is to premiumise biscuits, and so while Britannia biscuits sell at ₹200 a kg, a Deuce will retail at ₹500 a kg. Though it democratises chocolate from ₹850 to ₹500, it really premiumizes the biscuit,” added Shere.

Published on January 18, 2018

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