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Team PotatoPro with Mr. Kuldeep at InterFood Tech 2022 at Mumbai, India.

PotatoPro visiting TOMRA Food at InterFood Tech 2022 in Mumbai, India. From Left to Right: Nipun Krishnan, Business development at PotatoPro, Kuldeep Sharma Regional Sales manager for India and Bangladesh at TOMRA Food (India) and Sweta Kumari, Marketing Manager at PotatoPro. 

July 15, 2022
During InterFood Tech in Mumbai, PotatoPro interviewed Kuldeep Sharma from TOMRA Food on the Indian Potato Market, how it differs differs from the European and American Market, Sustainability, Steam peeling Solutions and Optical Sorting in potato processing.

PotatoPro: How is the Indian Potato market different from the European and American market?

Kuldeep Sharma:
"India produces 52 million tons of potatoes per year, ranking second in the world and of all India’s potatoes, 90% go to wholesale as fresh produce, 10% to the process industry. Some 60% of potatoes used in the process industry here are in the unorganized sector."

"The organized sector (for French Fries, chips, and so on) handles a relatively modest amount, two million metric tons of potatoes each year."

"This is because India is still in the very early stages of organizing its potato industry. In Europe and the Americas there is huge demand for French fries, but here there is potential for much growth."

"That said, we are seeing multiple levels of growth in chips and potato snacks in certain parts of India. As consumers change their eating habits, there will be future opportunities for potato processors."
PotatoPro: What challenges did TOMRA Food face in the Asian markets?

Kuldeep Sharma:
"TOMRA Food has invested heavily in many regions to support the global potato processing business expansion. The state-of-the-art facility in Bengaluru of approximately 4000 square ft is one of many regional centres that enables TOMRA Food to showcase its expertise and innovative approach to Peeling and Sorting."

"Customer centricity has always been a critical part of TOMRA DNA and for more than 30 years TOMRA Food has strived to help food processors in India and other Asian markets to extract the maximum value from their produce and to ensure the highest quality of their products."

"The training and knowledge share from TOMRA Food local experts to all functions within the customer organisation has been a major focus area and today you can see many of these customers leading the industry."

"TOMRA has already partnered in Asian markets with several major potato processors to supply various types of potato sorters and peelers. Processors in India are mainly multinational corporations and some key business Houses, and most of these are our customers. TOMRA’s position will strengthen as end-consumer demand for potato products increases."
PotatoPro: How is TOMRA Food addressing Sustainability?

Kuldeep Sharma:
"Sustainability is important for everyone and for the planet. To improve our planet's resource usage, we need technology-driven solutions. That’s why sustainability is at the heart of TOMRA, illustrated by our tagline: ‘Every Resource Counts’."

"By working together with growers, packers, and food processors, TOMRA can help optimize food production, bit by bit. Focusing on customer needs and using the most advanced digital solutions - such as the TOMRA Insight cloud-based data platform for sorters – we can greatly reduce food loss and increase both yield and throughput."

"This is good for our customers, helping to protect and empower their businesses, and good for reducing food loss, which the world urgently needs."

"In the Indian (Asian) markets, as elsewhere in the world, sustainability is becoming more relevant to governments, consumers, and businesses."

"With this heightened awareness and sense of responsibility, TOMRA’s solutions are in ever greater demand."
PotatoPro: What new opportunities did Interfood Tech 2022 for TOMRA Food?

Kuldeep Sharma:
"After two years of travelling limitations and exhibition cancellations because of the COVID pandemic, it was good to go to Interfood Tech 2022."

"We met many of our existing clients and some new prospects, and are looking forward to seeing more shows like this."

"There was a real sense of optimism about the future expansion of India based Food processing companies. We see India continuing to play a major role in the global supply of innovative and nutritious products and we are delighted to be able to support in any way possible."
Interfood Tech event brought a lot of new opportunities for Food Industry in Indian market as well as on a global level.
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