Beverage company PepsiCo has entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Maharashtra state in India to support fruit processing and horticulture as part of its Rs330bn ($4.8bn) investment plan in the country by 2020.
Under the MOU, PepsiCo would continue to work with local farmers to improve crop yields and help revolutionise fruit processing industry with other initiatives.
The company plans to launch several juices from locally-sourced fruits such as mango, guava, litchi, jamun and pomegranate, reported PTI.
PepsiCo India Chairman and CEO Shiv Shivakumar was quoted by the news agency as saying: "Food and beverages localisation is very important.
"We already have a plant Citrus International in Nanded, Maharashtra and we continue to invest in it so that we use a lot more of the local fruits in our product.
"PepsiCo introduced Tropicana Mosambi two months ago and this is one way to ensure that fruit use by PepsiCo from the farmers improves."
The beverage company also intends to use its expertise gained in other markets to identify feasible ways of introducing fruit juice into its carbonated drinks segment in order to increase consumption volume.
The company is collaborating with the Maharashtra government to modernize the fruit processing industry in the state.
Indian government wants beverage companies operating in India to mix fruit juice in their aerated drinks. Taking the cue, Coca-Cola unveiled a new fruit-concentrated fizzy drink christened Fanta Green Mango last week at the Make In India summit.
The drink is being projected as 'juice with fizz formulation'. It contains 10.4% juice concentrate, which is produced by local farmers and pulp processors. Said to be the company's second product launch in 2016, Fanta Green Mango is slated to be launched in the country this week.