A conscious strategy to drive the competitiveness of value chains linked to its businesses enables ITC to make a more enduring contribution to national economic development. ITC's winning brands drive synergies to make these value chains sustainable and inclusive. At the same time, by nurturing and strengthening these value chains, ITC adds a unique source of competitive strength to its brands. A very successful example of value chain augmentation is the ITC e-Choupal initiative that empowers over 4 million farmers, while at the same time providing significant competitive advantage in procuring raw material for ITC’s Foods business – be it for Aashirvaad atta produced from handpicked whole wheat, quality-assured Aashirvaad spices or superior chipstock potatoes for Bingo! snack foods.
ITC’s Social and Farm Forestry initiative is another example of such sustainable value chains. Renewable plantations cultivated under this initiative enable ITC to offer the greenest paper and paperboards products manifest in stationery brands such as Classmate and Paperkraft. The bedrock of this initiative is the development and greening of more than 1,42,000 hectares including wastelands, which has also provided over 64 million person days of employment to poor tribal communities and marginal farmers.
The linkage of ITC's Women Empowerment Programmes to ITC's Agarbattis Business with the brand Mangaldeep is yet another unique example of livelihood creation through competitive value chains. These programmes have also provided gainful employment to over 14,000 rural women.
ITC’s Livestock Development programme, a CSR initiative to promote off-farm livelihood options for farmers, has been scaled up to provide animal husbandry services to more than 8,00,000 milch animals. In the future, the increasing milk yields will not only provide significant livelihood opportunities but also support a competitive and sustainable dairy value chain.