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NEW DELHI : Your neighbourhood ice cream cart will soon find a listing on online food delivery platform Swiggy. As part of its plans to scale up a pilot which was started last year, Hindustan Unilever Ltd (HUL) will list more pushcarts, restaurants and shops that stock its popular ice cream brands, such as Magnum, Cornetto, and Kwality Wall’s on Swiggy ahead of the peak summer season.

The move is the company’s maiden attempt at capitalizing on India’s emerging online food ordering ecosystem that has altered the way Indians eat. HUL has identified 300 locations across top 20 cities that will be gradually listed for Swiggy users.

“We conducted a pilot last year across top cities with Swiggy to test out various fulfilment models. While the user sees a Kwality Wall’s storefront on Swiggy, the fulfilment may take place from a retail shop or a pushcart vendor at the back-end," said a HUL spokesperson.

The pushcart vendors are fed through distributors or even restaurants that serve Kwality Wall’s products. “Come summer 2020, these models will be scaled up to over 300 locations across the country," the spokesperson said. The company has provided outlets with the necessary IT infrastructure, which would prompt them when an order is placed. HUL will also provide cold gel packs for packaging to ensure delivery of its ice cream brands in warmer temperatures.

“As soon as we picked up a change in consumer habits with the emergence of food delivery apps, we devised a plan to deliver our products to the consumer at their desired time and place," Himanshu Kanwar, general manager (ice creams) at HUL, said in an email.

Analysts who track the consumer goods sector said the move is interesting, given that large ice cream chains have been using online aggregators for a few years. “This will help HUL expand in-home consumption of ice creams and also enable consumers to buy single scoops as aggregators enable that," said an analyst speaking on the condition of anonymity.

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