ITC is seeing a rapid revival in the instant-noodles category.

The company’s Yippee Noodles was among the few in the market not to be impacted by the food safety controversy that hit the instant-noodles category earlier this year.

On the sidelines of FICCI Foodworld India, VL Rajesh, CEO-Food Division, ITC, told BusinessLine that, “The instant-noodle market had shrunk massively after the entire controversy and there was so much doubt, confusion and misinformation which had affected the consumer sentiment.

“Of course, the market got affected. But the industry is now recovering… we as players in the industry have done enough to revitalise consumer confidence…. Our sales have revived very rapidly.”

According to estimates, the instant-noodles category had decreased to about ₹1,000 crore from the size of about ₹3,500-4,000 crore.

On the food safety regulations, he said, “I think the food safety regulator needs to ensure that there is clarity and no ambiguity in the implementation of the laws. They also need to make sure that all the stakeholders’ views are co-opted, while formulating regulations as it will help make them practical.

“We are beginning to see this happen under the new leadership and I am hopeful this will pan out well for the industry.”

New launches

He added that there is a need for the food safety regulations to be implemented uniformly, while these laws are framed at the central level but when they are implemented at state and district levels, multiple-interpretations come up which create ambiguity.

Talking about upcoming launches in the FMCG segment, Rajesh said the company has seen good response for the ghee that was recently launched under the brand name of Aashirvaad, the company’s first product in the dairy segment.

He said the company is looking at more launches in snacks, spices as well as new variants of Atta which will look at addressing specific nutritional needs of consumers.

He added that the company is also looking to launch some new proprietary food products, which are awaiting local level approvals and expects for these approvals to fall in place.