Robots develop food taste | mint


Sacheerome is behind the fragrances and flavors for some of India’s best-known consumer goods brands such as Godrej, Emami, ITC, CavinKare, Marico and Ajmal Perfumes. The company plans to source six more robots for its upcoming facility in Greater Noida, he said.

Sacheerome has supplied fragrances or flavors for over 750 products used at home such as toothpaste, face wash and floor cleaning liquids. Almost 550 tons of perfumes and fragrances are produced this year.

In the intricate world of fragrance making, humans must enlist the help of robots with complex technical names to identify precise ingredients. The tools are similar to using a CT scan machine, which can identify each problem and the quantity needed for each product.

“In a way, robots are tools used to precisely blend the fragrances and are used for production and automated dispensing. They are not used specifically to create the fragrances, but for production, precision at the highest level, speed and most importantly, secrecy,” said Arora.

The perfumer’s nose does the rest, he said. Evaluators map products and observe and advise on future trends, as well as help identify flaws in a fragrance’s and product’s profile, strength, retention and longevity, Arora explained.

Sacheerome’s five-story office also houses a library of over 700 floral oils imported from around the world and India. Some are synthetically made and come from variations of lavender, calendula, various roses, and bergamot. These oils have been used to create a blend of over 10,000 fragrances and flavors that go into just about everything sold by retailers across India.

“Perfumery is a mixture of science, art and skill. With decades of experience and exposure to the best in the world, we have the skills and technology to create very unique notes. The world is also coming to India for perfumery because we have precious oils and ingredients like oud, sandalwood, vetiver and musk that dominate the market in all categories,” said Arora.

Some end-to-end products can take up to two years to create.

For this season, body washes and shampoos use floral, fruity and gourmet notes, while fine fragrances use wood, oud, musk and amber, he said. “Smells and scents are important. Imagine starting your day and your favorite toothpaste doesn’t taste the way it should. You won’t feel fresh. Everything we buy is scented to differentiate it from anything else on the market.”

The company also meets the smell and taste needs of sectors such as Beverage, Bakery, Confectionery, Dairy, Hookah and Tobacco, and Spices.

“In the early 80’s, India’s FMCG manufacturing was completely dependent on imported smells and tastes. Realizing this, I set out to learn about fragrance formulation and production in Grasse, France and Holzminden, Germany, and to train with respected perfumers such as Hans Ulrich Warnecke of Dragaco (now Symrise) and Jerry Field of P&G to leave,” Arora said.

He cited data from 2019, when the Indian fragrance and flavor industry was worth about $1.4 billion. It is now expected to grow at a 15% compound annual growth rate to $3.3 billion between 2019 and 2025. The FMCG non-food industry is also expected to grow at a 7% CAGR compared to the expected 1.7% growth in mature markets like the US, he added.

The company is targeting sales of 500 crore by FY25 due to strong growth in FMCG segments. It has also worked on newer categories such as premium perfumes and supplying candle fragrances to American companies for the next phase of growth.

To meet the demands of a growing business, the manufacturer and supplier of concentrated fragrances and flavors is building a 300,000 square foot facility in Greater Noida. The project will take three years, Arora said.

With around 30 years and 10,000 products, Arora may be present in every Indian household, but he is not satisfied. He wants to start a school to get more people into the profession. It will be like a diploma course where people with a good sense of smell will be hired as trainees, junior perfumers and flavorists to learn on-the-job.

“ISIPCA in Versailles, France offered this type of training. We are in contact with the senior members of the institution to consult them for our project,” he added.

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