Food

‘Challenge is to globalise Indian cuisine’

DELHI: The man who was responsible for the tagline ‘God’s Own Country’ and ‘Incredible India’ – two huge initiatives that drove tourism – CEO of Niti Aayog, Modi government’s initiative to foster state governments’ participation in the economic policy making, Amitabh Kant says we need to market India as a brand internationally, reports India Today.

“The food and beverages sector is vibrant in India-growing at a rate of 29 per cent-driving India’s economy. The challenge is to globalise Indian cuisine. Abroad, Bangladeshi and Nepali cuisine are passed off as Indian cuisine.

No one knows about the Mopla cuisine or the Syrian Christian food in Kerala. A lot of other regional cuisine still remains undiscovered,” he said. Kant said private players like TATA need to put out Indian brands on international shelves. “We need Indian coffee and tea brands that are available across the world. You walk into any tea shop and you will find Sri Lankan tea but there is not one Indian brand that’s available. Milk is another such commodity that we can market,” he says.

Just like any other challenge, these too can be solved with the help of professionals, according to Kant.

“Private sector will help take Food India forward. Indian food products don’t get the place it deserves. We have to cater to the needs of international audience while selling it to them. Presentation and packaging is of utmost importance. Like the Japanese does it, full of colours and appeal” Kant added that Indian brands have been rather pathetic in establishing Indian brands and that they really need to step up.

“Indians must have a sense of pride and ownership. Our firms need to market their products abroad as Indian, not just any brand,” he said. Apart from packaging and presenting, Kant has another tip. “Opening up the food retail sector is a huge plan in my mind. That way, the ultimate gainer is the farmer.” Kant had an interesting take on the junk food service tax that Kerala recently introduced.

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