Bharti, Del Monte launch food products range

May 26th, 2009 - 3:09 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, May 26 (IANS) Bharti group, promoted by the Delhi-based Mittal family, has ventured into food and beverage products in partnership with the Singapore-based Del Monte Pacific at an initial investment of Rs.1 billion ($20 million/Rs.100 crore).
Group company Bharti Enterprises Tuesday launched a range of food and beverage products that includes fruit drinks, packaged fruits, ketchup and sauces, apart from several Italian products for the Indian market.

The partners had set up a joint venture in 2004 with the aim of linking Indian fields to the world and making the country a global food basket.

Operating under the brand name “FieldFresh”, the venture has acquired some 300 acres in Punjab to serve as the hub for research and development and hopes to employ some 100,000 people directly or indirectly.

“This is a significant milestone for the company as we make our entry into the processed food and beverage segment. Our plan is to emerge as a leading player in this sector,” said Bharti Enterprises vice chairman and managing director Rakesh Bharti Mittal.

“We will invest much more as we outline other products in future growth,” Mittal told reporters on the sidelines of a conference here.

Del Monte Pacific, which makes fruit and vegetable-based products, holds exclusive rights to produce and distribute food and beverage products under the Del Monte brand in the Indian sub-continent.

It owns a manufacturing facility near Bangalore that produces processed mango and guava products.

The Bharti group has interests in telecom, retail, insurance and realty, and now, food and beverage products.

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