Robust innovation at ITC’s Life Sciences and Technology Center powered its businesses in FY22

New Delhi, Jun 24 (IANS): Diversified conglomerate ITC Limited has established itself as a leading Indian innovator.

From waste reduction, environment conservation to quickly launching products tailored to the dynamic needs of the consumers, the company has recorded handsome achievements on multiple fronts through internal innovation and R&D.

ITC continues to make significant progress in reducing specific waste generation through constant monitoring and improvement of efficiencies in material utilization and also in achieving almost total recycling of waste generated in operations.

In FY22, it achieved over 99 per cent waste recycling. Additionally, the company’s Paperboards & Specialty Papers Business recycled over 85,000 tonnes of externally sourced post-consumer wastepaper, thereby creating yet a massive positive environmental footprint.

ITC aims to go beyond the requirements of Plastic Waste Management Rules, 2016 to ensure that over the next decade, 100 per cent of packaging is reusable, recyclable, or compostable / biodegradable.

The company is also pursuing a low carbon growth strategy through extensive decarbonization programs across its value chain. These include increasing the share of renewable energy, continuous reduction of specific energy, construction of green buildings, greening logistics and optimizing ‘distance-to-market’ and promoting regenerative agriculture practices in agri-value chains.

In the last financial year, ITC launched over 110 new products to strengthen and enhance its presence in the Fast-Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) space by leveraging its robust innovation platforms.

Long-time observers of the company believe that the company’s Life Sciences and Technology Center (LSTC) is to be credited for its ability to constantly innovate and ensure business growth even during unfavorable market conditions.

Based in Bengaluru, LSTC is at the core of driving science-led product innovation to support and build ITC’s portfolio of high-quality products and brands. The LSTC team comprising over 350 highly qualified and experienced scientists has a mandate to work on future-ready science platforms, design differentiated products to address unique consumer needs, and deliver superior benefits.

The Center is also at the forefront of executing robust R&D strategies and plans that embed sustainability and digitalisation in operations to enable rapid go-to-market timelines, enhanced quality of insights, and long-term competitiveness for every ITC business.

Equipped with state-of-the-art scientific infrastructure and facilities to create deep knowledge base and build intellectual property for ITC through research, rapid prototyping and process development, LSTC has so far facilitated 900 patents.

Thanks to the Centre’s ground-breaking work and accomplishments, in 2021, ITC was ranked ‘Top Innovator’ in India among the private pharma and healthcare companies by Sagacious, a leading global IP research firm.

The Center actively collaborates with and supports the company’s various businesses to drive their innovation agenda and accelerate growth. Acting as a forerunner in introducing first-to-market innovative products for consumers, ITC launched over 110 new products in FY22 by leveraging the robust innovation platforms of LSTC.

Inspired by the innovations at LSTC, the Paperboards & Specialty Papers Business developed a state-of-the-art next-generation smart and hyperscale digital and data infrastructure at its plants, enabling real-time operations control, process optimization and quality improvements.

In 2021-22, ITC Hotels leveraged technology to enhance business process efficiencies and outcomes. The Hotels Business continues to heighten its commitment towards prioritizing the safety and security of guests through the award winning ‘WeAssure’ program.

Leveraging its expertise and experience, the business launched its signature ‘Sleeep Boutiques’ across the country, offering a wide range of premium home bedding products both online and through retail stores.

As a future-ready innovation engine for ITC, LSTC is developing and deploying advanced tools for quality performance analytics and competition benchmarking by leveraging Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning. Further, robust risk management practices are in place to ensure that the company’s intellectual properties remain adequately protected at all times.

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