Press Trust of India | Bangalore
September 19, 2014 Last Updated at 18:25 IST
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Hindustan Coca-Cola Beverages and Jain Irrigation, in a joint venture, plan to scale up their joint initiative Project Unnati with investments of Rs 50 crore over 10 years to boost mango yields by enabling farmers with advanced technology.
The joint initiative would reach 25,000 farmers over next 10 years, HCCBPL CEO T Krishnakumar told reporters on the sidelines of the launch of company's new product 'Coca-Cola Zero', that has no sugar in it.
"The joint initiative will result in creation of an ecosystem that delivers higher growth and income for farmers and helps us streamline supply chain and enhance productivity for our Indian brands Maaza and Minute Maid Mango," he said.
This would also enable the company to confidently continue to deliver the refreshing beverages to consumers at affordable price points, he said.
The initiative, in its second phase will identify nearly, 25,000 farmers, holding an area of 50,000 acres and support them in adopting the Ultra High Density Plantation (UHDP) technology, Krishnakumar said.
"The selected farmers will be provided assistance for using this technology during the duration of the project," he said.
UHDP technology enables plantation of nearly 600 trees in an acre, instead of the conventional method of planting 40 trees, thereby increasing yield and improving the livelihood of the farmers, Krishnakumar said.
The scaled up initiative is expected to deliver close to 300 KMT fruit by the year 2022-23, Krishnakumar said.
Additionally, this joint initiative will develop Farmer Loyalty programs which will continue to encourage farmer's support to this program, he said.
With the launch of Coca-Cola Zero in India, the brand is now available in USA, Mexico, China, Brazil and Japan. Coca-Cola Zero is one of the 17 billion dollar brands of The Coca-Cola Company in revenue terms and is one of the fastest to this milestone, Krishnakumar said.
Coca-Cola Zero, in modern trade outlets, will first be available across the Reliance Retail chainm Krishnakumar stated.
Earlier, Coca-Cola Zero was launched by India's tennis stars Rohan Bopanna and Mahesh Bhupathi.