Friday, June 14, 2024

Access to Nutrition Initiative unveils 3rd edition of India Nutrition Index

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The Access to Nutrition Initiative (ATNI), a global independent non-profit organization dedicated to catalyzing market transformation for enhanced access to nutrition, hosted a multi-stakeholder event launching its third edition of the India Index, in partnership with Consumer Voice and Confederation of Indian Industry, as per a report by The Economic Times.

The India Index 2023 edition assesses 20 of the largest food and beverage manufacturers in India, out of which 14 companies are listed on Indian or international stock exchanges.

Business in India is booming, particularly in the food sector. The Government of India aims to double the contribution of the food processing sector to GDP by 2030. Alongside India’s rapid economic growth, the country is also witnessing a transition in dietary patterns and an increased consumption of processed foods. Indian household consumption is set to quadruple by 2030 and the sales of packaged F&B in India surged by 15% annually since 2011, increasing overall food sales. India’s food processing industry is now the sixth largest in the world, expected to reach INR 40.1 trillion (USD 480 billion) by 2026.

Greg S Garrett, Executive Director, ATNI, said, “ATNI works on three levels to transform markets and achieve improved access to healthier products and diets. The tools including benchmarks and indexes that assess the private sector on their nutrition commitments and products; policy support and alliances including via ATNI’s Investors in Nutrition and Health; and action research which underpin market change for nutrition.

Key Findings

The F&B industry plays an increasingly pivotal role in determining what consumers in India eat, the quality of their diets, and resulting health impacts. Seven out of 20 indexed companies are on a journey of transformation, setting (re)formulation targets in line with dietary guidelines for sodium, saturated fat, and sugar. Half of them wield nutrition strategies, marking a commitment to a healthier tomorrow.

The company dives into 1,901 products from the top 20 companies showing 24% of sales are derived from “healthier” products.

Some of the key findings are:

  • The findings of the 2023 India Index show that the F&B industry has significant opportunity to improve its product offerings making them healthier and more affordable for all consumers in India.
  • Five institutional investors and shareholders of food companies in India have now signed up to nutrition frameworks such as the Investor Expectations on Nutrition, Diets and Health as part of their responsible investment strategies.
  • Seven out of 20 indexed companies report having at least one (re)formulation target in place to reduce nutrients of concern (e.g., sodium, saturated fat, sugar) in their portfolio and half of the companies have a nutrition strategy in place.
  • Seven companies have a publicly available policy on responsible marketing to children.
  • Five companies show evidence of having clearly defined workforce nutrition programs in place, of which two companies clearly include measurable targets.
  • Seven out of 20 companies were found to have a responsible advocacy policy in place.

Aligned with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) aimed at addressing under nutrition and hunger, the India Index serves as a crucial instrument for enhancing product portfolios, striving for at least half of these portfolios to meet healthy standards by 2030.

Conclusion This India Index serves as a powerful catalyst for driving positive change within the food and beverage industry in India. By focusing on private sector contributions to diet, nutrition, and health, the Index sheds light on what is working and what is not among the food industry.

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