Majority of the food stocks are trading positive with Tata Coffee and Agro Tech Foods leading the gains. Sterling Biotech and Ruchi Soya are among the few stocks trading in red. As per a leading financial daily, the consumption of cookies and cream biscuits has edged ahead of glucose biscuits in the last two years. According to Nielsen's data, the value market share of glucose biscuits has declined from 26.7% in 1HFY11 to 19.3% in 1HFY13. During this period, cream biscuits have gained immensely with its value market share rising by 5.6% to 22.2% whereas value share of cookies expanded by 2.4% to 26.2%. This shift in consumption preference has been on account of aggressive launches by ITC, Britannia and Parle at affordable price-points that enabled cream biscuits and cookies to gain shares at the bottom of the pyramid. At the same time, a host of offerings by Cadbury and GSK Consumer based on the health or the premium planks have expanded consumption at the top of the pyramid. While glucose biscuits still rule the roost with volume shares of 28%, its offtake has been on a steady decline at the expense of the high-margin premium categories of cookies and cream biscuits. Accordingly biscuit majors, Parle, ITC and Britannia have been tweaking their sales-mix towards premium categories. Both ITC and Britannia stocks are up 0.8% and 0.3%, respectively.
Most of the energy stocks are trading in positive led by Oil and Natural Gas Corporation Ltd.(ONGC) and Chennai Petroleum. As per a leading financial daily, Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) has received approval from Directorate General of Hydrocarbons (DGH) to drill a well in the D-19 field located in the KG-D6 block. D-19 is one of the four satellite gas fields whose optimized field development plan (OFDP) has been approved in January 2012. RIL has, till date, discovered 18 gas wells and one oil well in the KG-D6 block. D1 & D3 which were among the largest of the 18 gas wells commenced production in April 2009 whereas MA oil field went on-stream in September 2008. However, water and sand seepage curtailed production in D1 & D3 fields from 55 mmscmd to 20 mmscmd while the MA field output fell from over 8 mmscmd to 5 mmscmd. RIL has shut six out of the 18 wells on the fields. RIL had submitted four OFDP for satellite gas discoveries in December 2009. RIL stock is marginally up.