Agri-food heavyweight Cargill is partnering with a local manufacturer in western India to launch its first chocolate manufacturing operation in the country as it makes its foray into the chocolate business in India. The company plans to scale up operational capabilities quickly in the fast-growing chocolate category. The facility is expected to begin operating mid-2021 and will initially produce 10,000 t of chocolate compounds.
“Asia is a key growth market for Cargill,” says Francesca Kleemans, Managing Director Cargill Cocoa & Chocolate Asia-Pacific. “Opening a chocolate manufacturing operation in India allows us to increase our regional footprint and capabilities in Asia to better support the needs of our local Indian customers as well as multinational customers in the region. Combining local insights from our experience and long-term presence as a food ingredient supplier in India with our global cocoa and chocolate expertise, we aim to become the leading supplier and trusted partner for our bakery, ice cream and confectionary customers in Asia. They will use our chocolate compounds, chips and paste to create products that will delight local palates”.
On a global scale, confectionery is building on premiumization in a market that is mature but continuing to grow modestly. Even given the rising concerns around sugar intake, consumers continue to demand more indulgent treats and snacks.