The US agri-multinational hopes to capitalise on the increasing demand for healthy and preservative-free fruits and fruit derivatives, it said, estimating the market size at $100 billion in the country.
Dole will set up two facilities in India within a year and will initially import tropical fruits and fruit-based beverages from other Southeast Asian countries for launch.
The partnership comes at a time when the overall consumer goods sector is seeing slowing growth, with consumers also cutting down on discretionary spending.
“If we want to grow in the world, we had to have our presence in India. I am not worried about the macroeconomics,” said Dole Foods global president Pier Luigi Sigismondi, dismissing concerns about the slowdown.
Kishore Biyani-owned Future Consumer has a host of other global tie-ups, including Hain Celestial to manufacture and sell food products in the health and wellness space, Mibelle AG, a division of Migros Group – Switzerland, to make a range of personal-care products under the brand Swiss Tempelle, and more recently, with New Zealand-based Fonterra to launch its dairy products.
“Consumers in India are limited in their choices of fruit and fruit-based healthy products, as a result of limited seasonality and challenges in the supply chain. It is a part of Future Group’s mission to increase the delivery of healthier food to our shoppers,” said Biyani.