Celebrating its 23rd anniversary, Hindustan Coca-Cola Beverages (HCCB) brought out in the limelight the importance of gender diversity and employment of women at important positions through a sand sculpture created by Sudarshan Patnaik. Awarded Padma Shri for his work, Patnaik gives prominence to the lady forklift operators at the HCCB factories. In order to showcase HCCB as one of India's original 'make in India' success stories, Patnaik has sculpted a huge bottling line that criss-crosses the entire frame and has a consistent presence from all angles.
According to the company, the women employees at HCCB are defying conventional beliefs and have become examples for others in their neighbourhood. HCCB's newest factory in Sanand, Gujarat employs more than 40% women. This includes the company's first women forklift operator, its first lady electrician and the world's first lady operator of the Plasmax machine. It was HCCB's focus towards generating employment for women which seems to have made a deep impression on Patnaik for him to choose this theme as the biggest standout of HCCB's 23-year journey in India.
HCCB is one of India's largest FMCG companies. It manufactures, packages and sells beverages such as Minute Maid, Maaza, SmartWater, Kinley, Thums Up, Sprite, Coca-Cola, Limca, Fanta, Georgia and several others. With a network of 3,900 distributors, over 250,000 farmers, 7,000 suppliers and over 2.5 million retail outlets, makes HCCB, an ecosystem of significant scale. It operates in 25 states in 493 districts. Through its 18 factories, HCCB manufactures and sells 60 different products in 9 different categories.