Kissan, which was acquired by Brooke Bond and started in 1993, started informally as a place selling fresh pickles from farmers in Punjab, at a train stop near a processing unit. The UB group, then under the late Vittal Mallya, acquired Kissan from Mitchell Bros during the British era. Later, Kissan was acquired by Brooke Bond India, which is now an integral brand of Hindustan Unilever Limited.
Kissan, from its early stages, has pioneered the launch of new food formats, such as canned fruits, vegetables, and baked beans. The company’s focus has been primarily to encourage small farmers to produce quality ingredients. According to statistics, Kissan obtained 76% of your tomatoes used in sustainably sourced tomato sauce.
Hindustan Unilever Limited also provides support in terms of training to farmers to gain experience in the field of agriculture, particularly in growing tomatoes. It also supports a guarantee policy to buy back products from farmers. The company also ensures that farmers are informed about the latest technology on the market, be it in irrigation practices or even recommending the right types of seeds for growing. For example, a tomato variety was developed that takes farmers far fewer days to harvest than the average time spent for the same task in regular processes. This allowed Hindustan Unilever to develop a broad supplier base with all farmers who wanted to support this technology that ensured higher yields and, in turn, maximum profits.
The brand sources all the ingredients from all over the country and aims to empower the nation’s farmers. The ads also show the same and have always promoted the message that their products are fresh from the farm.
The old advertisements focused especially on the freshness of the ingredients that were used in their products and communicated a feeling of freshness in the consumption of their tomato sauce, jams and pickles. The ideology of being full of natural goodness was promoted and that kissan ketchup could be used as a side to every dish one ate.
Their latest announcements give farmers more focus and also add a personal touch to the communication. With visually appealing graphics, the brand attracts the interest of all its target audience. Observe a series form in which a story is read and attracts the younger generation to consume the ketchup.
The brand has always kept its core identity and represented marketing strategies that have enhanced its appeal among all Indians to now become a household name.