Pa­pad Mar­ket

Progressive Grocer (India) - - Front Page - Har­shal Ch­heda Di­rec­tor, Ganesh Pa­pad

Steady do­mes­tic de­mand at 10% per an­num but ex­ports grow­ing at over over 30%

It’s a highly com­pet­i­tive mar­ket with more than 1,000 lo­cal play­ers across the coun­try. This mar­ket is at least INR 1,000 crore and has been grow­ing at 10% per an­num with ex­ports ris­ing by more than 30% an­nu­ally. In fu­ture, the mar­ket is pro­jected to reach INR 1,500 crore at least, in the next decade.

Har­shal Ch­heda, Pro­pri­etor and Di­rec­tor, Ganesh Pa­pad, speaks to Pro­gres­sive Gro­cer about the growth of pa­pad mar­ket in In­dia, the prod­uct’s im­pres­sive po­ten­tial for ex­ports and the ways in which man­u­fac­tur­ers are bring­ing higher value to the cat­e­gory. Can you of­fer a broad over­view of the pa­pad mar­ket in In­dia? How would you de­scribe the mar­ket size and growth of the cat­e­gory in re­cent years and what are the mar­ket pro­jec­tions for fu­ture growth?

When it comes to pa­pad, it’s a re­gional mar­ket where ev­ery re­gion con­sumes dif­fer­ent types of pa­pad like Ap­palam in the south or Bikaneri in Ra­jasthan and in east In­dia. It’s a highly com­pet­i­tive mar­ket with more than 1,000 lo­cal play­ers across the coun­try. This mar­ket is at least INR 1,000 crore and has been grow­ing at 10% per an­num with ex­ports ris­ing by more than 30% an­nu­ally. In fu­ture, the mar­ket is pro­jected to reach INR 1,500 crore at least, in the next decade.

How is the cat­e­gory shap­ing up and per­form­ing in terms of de­mand and sup­ply? Which are the fac­tors driv­ing the growth?

The mar­ket de­mand for pa­pad is steadily grow­ing. The main trig­ger for growth is com­ing from the ho­tel and in­sti­tu­tional seg­ment as more peo­ple are eating out these days. Va­ri­ety, taste and qual­ity are the fac­tors that are driv­ing growth. Es­pe­cially, in In­dia, where rice is con­sumed a lot, pa­pad is a must with ev­ery meal in ev­ery state.

Which fac­tors are play­ing an im­por­tant role in the cat­e­gory’s per­for­mance?

When it comes to this par­tic­u­lar prod­uct cat­e­gory, qual­ity and price play a cru­cial role. If you want to sur­vive in this mar­ket in the long run, the mantra is to keep of­fer­ing value. Peo­ple these days are will­ing to spend an ex­tra ru­pee to get a good qual­ity prod­uct. That’s the strat­egy we fol­low at Ganesh Pa­pad. If the ex­pected qual­ity is not met even af­ter a pre­mium pric­ing is charged, the brand loses cred­i­bil­ity and, most im­por­tantly, ‘re­peat pur­chase’ doesn’t hap­pen. So, main­tain­ing su­pe­rior qual­ity can jus­tify the pric­ing.

What are the new trends and de­vel­op­ments in the cat­e­gory that you would like to high­light?

Peo­ple in for­eign coun­tries are tak­ing a lik­ing to pa­pad as they have greater ex­po­sure to In­dian restau­rants in their coun­tries. This is a pos­i­tive sign as it’s open­ing more op­por­tu­ni­ties for the ex­port busi­ness.

Which are the front­line na­tional and re­gional brands in the pa­pad cat­e­gory?

Other than Ganesh Pa­pad, Li­j­jat is one of the old­est pa­pad brands in the na­tional mar­ket. There are about a hun­dred re­gional play­ers, who are en­gaged in small-scale busi­ness.

What is the scope for greater value-ad­di­tion in this prod­uct range (by way of in­trin­sic value ad­di­tion to the prod­uct, pack­ag­ing, etc.) and is there any such in­no­va­tions be­ing done by play­ers op­er­at­ing in this cat­e­gory?

With com­pe­ti­tion in­ten­si­fy­ing, mar­ket play­ers have to pull up their socks if they want to sur­vive the mar­ket. Here, ‘value ad­di­tion’ plays a cru­cial role. When it comes to the pa­pad in­dus­try, value ad­di­tion can be done with ready to eat pa­pads or with pack­ag­ing like zip pouches to en­sure fresh­ness, which many play­ers are do­ing. Also, new vari­ants like soya-based pa­pads are com­ing into the mar­ket.

How large is there an op­por­tu­nity for play­ers like your­self to grow and ex­pand the mar­ket for your products?

I be­lieve sky is the limit. Ganesh Pa­pad has al­ready marked its pres­ence na­tion­wide as well as in­ter­na­tion­ally. We keep in­tro­duc­ing newer prod­uct cat­e­gories, which keeps adding va­ri­eties to cus­tomers. We have a dig­i­tal pres­ence as well, which makes us more ac­ces­si­ble to cus­tomers. Adapt­ing newer mar­ket spa­ces is a must when it comes to FMCG products.

Any sug­ges­tion for bet­ter cat­e­gory man­age­ment/ mer­chan­dis­ing by re­tail­ers that could help the cat­e­gory grow more im­pres­sively?

Re­tail­ers need to give more dis­play as pa­pad is an im­pulse cat­e­gory prod­uct and re­tail­ers need to high­light the of­fers. Higher brand re­call con­verts into pos­i­tive sales.

Give us an ac­count of your brand’s strength in this space vis-a-vis the com­pe­ti­tion. Which are the strong mar­kets for your products and what are your plans for strength­en­ing your re­tail pres­ence?

We are the lead­ing brand in In­dia. Cur­rently, our main mar­kets are west and cen­tral In­dia and in the next five years, we will be avail­able across In­dia. Also, we have a com­plete pres­ence in a mod­ern trade where we have a strong dis­tri­bu­tion set-up.

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