Interview – DS Rathore, business head, Foodpro Packaging

Retort pouches for ready-to-eat food made in India

Foodpro Packaging
DS Rathore, business head, Foodpro Packaging at Propak India 2021. Photo PSA

Food packaging is crucial to the overall performance of any food processing unit. The essential criteria for increasing the efficacy of food processing are flavor, fragrance, and process integrity. Foodpro has an unconventional approach to assure hassle-free packaging solutions for ready-to-eat food. At Propak India 2021 in Pragati Maidan, Delhi, PSA Correspondent Girish Anshul visited FoodPro Packaging to interview DS Rathore, the company’s Business head.

Packaging South Asia – Give a brief introduction about your venture.

DS RathoreFoodpro Packaging is a new venture started in 2020. The main objective of starting this business is to cut down on the import of retort pouch packaging. As we have been using retort packaging for the last 15 years and all this packaging come from china. So, to cut down the import, this retort packaging will now be available in India itself.

Packaging South Asia – Who are the target customers?

DS Rathore – In India, primarily, ready-to-eat foods are in increasing demand. Our company targets MTR, ITC, Drools and many other ventures for their food packaging.

Packaging South Asia – After two years, you are here at Propak India 2021. What changes have you seen?

DS Rathore – Propak starts a new series of the exhibition idea. It is an excellent initiative for the exhibitors as well as for the visitors. Visitors are coming to see the products of the companies and for their solutions also. We are expecting more visitors, but even with slightly fewer visitors, this is not disappointing us. Visitors are coming with zeal and zest to the expo. 

Packaging South Asia – In the food packaging market, others also make different packaging types but how is your packaging different from the competitors?

DS Rathore – In the pandemic period, people started to have a greater concern about packaged food. So, for the packaging of food, our company is working on proper hygiene solutions and sustainability. It can to some extent replace street food, where the hygiene issue is of greater concern. We are making retort pouches for the packaging for beverages, pet food, baby food, army ration and several other products. Other companies are importing retort packaging, but we manufacture it ourselves near our customers. It will help us in cutting costs as well as help in economic growth. 

Packaging South Asia – Do the FSSAI rules and regulations affect the process or make it smoother?

DS Rathore – FSSAI rules and regulations are helping us in functioning the food processes. People are getting aware, and it helps in confidence-building for the entire food processing supply chain to rise for domestic consumption. Otherwise, most of the things which are processed are exported.

Packaging South Asia – What are the prospects and goals for the company?

DS Rathore – Our company’s main objective is to give packaging ‘next door.’ The packaging material imported from China or Korea takes a lot of time from importing to the final packaging. Our company want to cut the processing time by making the packaging material in India and giving the same quality to the customer at a lower price and time.

The Covid-19 pandemic led to the country-wide lockdown on 25 March 2020. It will be two years tomorrow as I write this. What have we learned in this time? Maybe the meaning of resilience since small companies like us have had to rely on our resources and the forbearance of our employees as we have struggled to produce our trade platforms.

The print and packaging industries have been fortunate, although the commercial printing industry is still to recover. We have learned more about the digital transformation that affects commercial printing and packaging. Ultimately digital will help print grow in a country where we are still far behind in our paper and print consumption and where digital is a leapfrog technology that will only increase the demand for print in the foreseeable future.

Web analytics show that we now have readership in North America and Europe amongst the 90 countries where our five platforms reach. Our traffic which more than doubled in 2020, has at times gone up by another 50% in 2021. And advertising which had fallen to pieces in 2020 and 2021, has started its return since January 2022.

As the economy approaches real growth with unevenness and shortages a given, we are looking forward to the PrintPack India exhibition in Greater Noida. We are again appointed to produce the Show Daily on all five days of the show from 26 to 30 May 2022.

It is the right time to support our high-impact reporting and authoritative and technical information with some of the best correspondents in the industry. Readers can power Packaging South Asia’s balanced industry journalism and help sustain us by subscribing.

– Naresh Khanna

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