LT Foods, known for its Daawat and Royal basmati rice brands, is strengthening its play in the packaged food business by foraying into the premium snacks segment through its joint-venture partnership with Japan-based Kameda Seika.

The joint venture company called Daawat-Kameda (India) Pvt Ltd is set to launch its rice-based gourmet snacks brand ‘ Kari Kari’ in key cities in the country.

The two companies had announced their joint venture in 2017 and have since been test marketing the products in Delhi-NCR, Bengaluru and Mumbai. The JV company has now set up a manufacturing facility at Sonipat (Haryana) to manufacture ‘ Kari Kari’ range of products for a full-scale commercial launch in India.

Vijay Kumar Arora, Chairman & Managing Director, LT Foods, said, “This move is in line with our strategy to diversify into value-added rice-based products. We see huge potential in the premium and healthy snacks segment, which is growing in the range of 22-25 per cent year-on-year.”

Investment details

Arora said that the two partners have made commitments of about ₹70 crore for the JV venture, out of which investments worth about ₹25 crore have already been made on setting up the plant and the balance amount will be invested over the next five years on future expansion. Jun Kono, Director, Daawat Kameda (India) Pvt Ltd and Overseas Manager, Kameda Seika, said, “We believe we have the opportunity to create a new category of roasted rice-based healthy snacks to appeal to Indian consumer base. We believe India has the potential to become one of our largest international markets in the long term.”

Distribution strategy

Kari Kari range has been launched in four variants priced at ₹ 99 for 135-gm pack and ₹50 for 60-gm pack.

Ritesh Arora, Head of India, Far East and New Busines, LT Foods, said that the company will focus on making the products available in modern trade stores and premium general trade stores in metros and top cities, besides the e-commerce platform over the next two years.