ITC bets on ‘sixth sense’ of visually impaired, hires 60

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NEW DELHI: Narasimman, a 39-year-old visually impaired salesperson, used to sell toys, phone cases, card pouches, earphones, and charging cables in Chennai’s local trains to support his family of three.
This was before ITC recruited him as part of ‘Mangaldeep Sixth Sense’ panel to evaluate unique fragrances for the soaps-to-cigarette conglomerate’s Mangaldeep agarbatti brand.
Narasimman is among the 60 visually disabled people picked up by the Kolkata headquartered ITC as part of its consumer panel, which the company said will increase in capacity and may spill over to other categories such as personal care and food.
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“We are training them on building strong sensory evaluation capabilities and also certifying them internally, which we hope will enable them to render their services to more consumer companies operating in fragrance are- na,” a senior ITC executive told TOI. The development comes on the back of heightened demand for trained “noses” by India Inc, as companies look to differentiate their offerings on the basis of fragrance and flavours.
“India is very rich in natural essential oils and aromas. In fact, the essential oil market has always remained untapped,” said Manoj Arora, proprietor at homegrown flavours and fragrance house, Sacheerome. “It is only now that people are realising how conducive the conditions are to produce expensive oils in India. We are 20% of the world’s population and we make up only 3% of the global market share. ”



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