A group of mango growers in the Chittoor district of Andhra Pradesh are developing a mango wine. The products will be hitting the consumer market in the next two years. According to a report in The Financial Express, about 500 farmers have registered with Galla Foods Pvt. Ltd, a member of the Amara Raja group, which was set up in 2005, and is working in tandem to blend value-added products from mangoes. Besides, another 4,000 farmers are partners in progress for the Rs 100-crore business in bringing quality fruits, selection and processing fruit concentrates and pulp for various mango delicacies.
These farmers supply 28,000 tonnes of fruits that are crushed to derive 13,500 tonnes of pulp in single strength equivalent. These farmers are planning to form farmers’ clubs which would assist in cooperative farming wit a buyback arrangement from the company.
Galla Foods, an exporter of fruit concentrates and pulp to Europe, Japan and the US, entered the domestic market with the launch of thick mango nectar, Gall Thick Mango, in the country. Says Jay Galla, managing director of the company, “We are looking at new blends and variants with mango as the base. Having a capacity to process 20 tonnes per hour, the company’s pulp plant has the technology and equipment from SIG-Mazini of Italy, and we would be soon expanding the capacity as well.” Till date, the company has invested about Rs 53 crore for infrastructure.
“We are working with the farming community not just as vendors but have made them an integral part of the process. We are in touch with the research institutes such as the Central Food Technology Research Institute (CFTRI), Mysore, for improving yields and other best practices for pre and post-harvesting season,” Galla said
Mango is the leading fruit crop in Andhra Pradesh, covering an area of 2.76 lakh hectares which accounts for 60% of the total area under fruits with an annual production of about 3.25 laklh tonnes. For more info on India’s beverage sector, click here.