Encouraged by a bumper Basmati rice crop in 2012 and the relaxation of export curbs by the Indian government, Radikal, a leading Indian exporter of high-quality, nutritive and healthy food products, today announced that it was firmly on course with its aggressive expansion strategy to reach 65 countries, including those in the GCC, by end-2013.
The company has now spread its operations across the GCC. While NMC Trading handles the distribution of Radikal products in the UAE, the company had formed important partnerships in other GCC states, including Abbar Foods in Saudi Arabia, GTRC in Kuwait, Jasmis Corporation in Bahrain and Bludan Trading in Qatar.
Radikal’s Managing Director Siddharth Chaudhary confirmed that the company would soon be increasing its exports to the GCC in view of the demand for high-quality nutritive and healthy long-grain rice.
"The cornerstone of Radikal is to offer pure and healthy grains for people of all ages and tastes across the world. Today, consumers are educated, well-travelled and increasingly health-conscious. As a result, Radikal, which has always been driven by a single-minded philosophy to offer healthy and nutritive products, is the obvious choice for health-conscious consumers," he said.
"We are committed to produce rice that can enhance overall experience of indulgence with enhanced nutritive value, thereby inspiring a healthy life. The GCC traditionally has been one of the leading importers of Indian Basmati rice and accounts for 20% of our total exports. We are confident of increasing our exports to the GCC to 28% by the end of the year,” Chaudhary added.
Following the Indian government’s scrapping of the minimum export price in July last year due to a large amount of rice stocks, Indian Basmati rice traders are now poised to increase their worldwide rice exports by a further 12-15 per cent in 2013, Chaudhary said. Currently, India exports a staggering 3 million tons of Basmati rice every year to major markets such as the GCC, Iraq, Europe and the United States.
India produced a record 103 million tons of rice in the 2012 crop year that ended in June, a jump of about 8 percent over the previous year, including 5 million tons of Basmati.The aromatic rice variety is typically grown in the North Indian states of Haryana, Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir and Uttarakhand.
Vikas Gawari, Vice President, Radikal Overseas, said that the company would now strengthen its presence in the Middle East and Africa, including Jordan, Lebanon, Yemen and Iraq. "We will aggressively market the brand in countries where the consumption of Indian Basmati rice has witnessed a significant increase over the past few years. By presenting different varieties of rice grain offering low-fat balanced diet, rich in vitamins, minerals, fibre, antioxidants and phytochemicals, Radikal is committed to make a wholesome product that is high on health, taste and innovation," he explained.
Currently, India is the world’s largest rice exporter, displacing Thailand from its leadership position in 2012, with Indian rice exports in marketing year (October 2011 - September 2012) placed at a record 10.4 million tons. The No 1 position follows the Indian government’s decision in February 2011 to lift a four-year ban on exports of non-Basmati varieties of rice, paving the way for a rise in exports.
Radikal currently operates in 30 countries, including those in the GCC, Asia, Europe, United States, Canada, Australia, Africa and the Middle East.