Do readymade parathas have a future in India?

Published: Oct 20, 2019, 10:37 IST | mid-day online correspondent | Mumbai

In India, we revere food and are lucky to have a diverse and unique food palate where every household has at least one recipe that is passed on as a family heirloom

This image has been used for representational purpose
This image has been used for representational purpose

Food evokes memories, and people travel miles for good food, wait for hours at a restaurant with a reputation for good food and at home, our families spend hours planning, preparing, and serving food at every occasion. In India, we revere food and are lucky to have a diverse and unique food palate where every household has at least one recipe that is passed on as a family heirloom.

Chef Ravindranath, Deputy General Manager- Head R & D, Innovative Foods Limited, Brand Sumeru reveals if readymade parathas have a future in India. Today, urban milieu is changing our food habits. Several factors contribute to this phenomenon including rapid urbanisation, larger disposable incomes of a growing middle-class, an increasing number of women in the workforce, migrant student population and even an expanding diaspora of expats. With nuclear families increasing in number, families and women especially are looking for healthy, tasty and convenient foods that can be prepared in a jiffy. Enter ready-to-eat foods.

The Indian food industry is projected to grow at a CAGR of 16 per cent and reach USD 647 million by 2023. In fact, according to a Nielsen report, the breakfast mixes market in India was growing at 17 per cent and pegged at Rs 275 crores. This rise in demand for RTEs has several reasons besides busier lifestyles or rising income levels. The RTE food industry has also come a long way from being perceived as only "for frozen meats, peas and seafood or vegetables," full of additives or not very healthy to a more robust, convenient and healthy alternative. RTE manufacturers have improved technology, leading to increased shelf-life, improved retention of nutrients and freshness of foods manufactured. An important facet of the evolution of how the urban middle-class woman is preparing and consuming food is also the easy access to modern technology by way of smart appliances, and availability of foods at a growing number of retail outlets, convenience stores and supermarkets.

Preparing the ubiquitous parathas for breakfast or packing it in lunch boxes is no longer tedious. Ready-to-eat parathas come in traditional and interesting flavours that add a twist to your breakfast or meal. Ajwain, Methi, Aloo, Sweet Corn, Jeera, Turmeric, Beetroot, and Onion parathas are just some of the healthier, tastier paratha options that are ready to satisfy your taste buds. Just open the packet, toss it on to a pre-heated tawa and cook it for 3 minutes or use your pre-heated oven at 180° and voila, your golden brown, delicious paratha is ready to be served. With ingredients sourced from the best regions in the country, advanced IQF (Individual Quick Frozen) technology that locks in the nutrients and freshness, the best chefs innovating to come up with mouth-watering flavours, our kitchens are more than ready to explore this convenient and tasty option.

Working women or students, the elderly or single parents, need no longer stress about socialising, having unexpected guests or relatives over on vacation. The well-loved and ready-to-eat parathas are ideal - finger-licking good, easy to buy, quick to make and above all packed with goodness and nutrition.

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