Rural areas hold key markets for ice-cream companies in India
Yakhchal were underground cool storing chambers in the ancient Persia regions. These chambers were used to store snow ice for usage during the hot climate. Persian people used this snow to cool themselves by pouring upon fruit juices and having them as a treat. This is believed to be the origination of what today are known as “Ice-creams”. This recipe soon spread to other parts of the globe and people from different countries started innovating and adding new tastes to this. For instance the Arabs used milk as a key ingredient and sweetened it by adding sugar instead of fruit juices. The method of preparing ice-creams developed and numerous flavors and sorts came into practice with time passage, making it a favorite around the globe. India like other countries has a rising market for ice-creams tremendous potential for growth in the coming future.
The Indian ice-cream market is annually pegged at Rs.4, 300 crores and 60% of the market is formed by the unorganized sector. The organized sector amounts merely to a worth of Rs.1, 700 crores, ice-cream in the APAC countries has emerged as the fastest growing and thus the most favorite dairy product. In India, the market for ice-creams is typical as the sales go up during summers and while in winters there is a sharp dip in the sales chat. The per capita consumption rate is still under the 1000ml range, 750 ml to be precise. Whereas the global average per capita consumption is valued at 2500 ml. the US being the largest consumer having a per capita consumption of more than 30 liters and China with 1.2 liters. These consumption numbers prove that India spaces better scope for improvement. The rural areas are prime targets which houses untapped markets for the industry.
There are certain reasons for a low frozen ice-cream market in the rural areas, the long duration power-cuts and improper cold chain logistic systems are pinned up as major reasons. Amul, Vadilal, Kwality Walls and Mother Dairy are primary national manufacturers. Out of these, Amul and Mother Dairy are planning big expansions mainly in the rural sectors of the country. As per market research reports, the present ice-cream industryis growing at a rate of 15% since last year and experts indicate that this rate is ought to climb up with the implications of expansions and inflow of foreign brands into the national market.
In recent years, there are big universal brands from all over the globe introduced in India. Brands like London dairy, Baskin-Robins, New Zealand Naturals, Gelato Italino and Hokey-Pokey are some of the latest additions that have established their footmarks in the urban segment. Moreover, in the west, ice-cream is treated as a normal intake compared to the Indian culture where it is still majorly consumed on special occasions or during a treat. For the progress of this industry, renowned experience companies in the sector are striving hard to expand their reach to the village population. Introducing culture based flavors is one method of getting the rural consumers interested. In addition to this, they are in talks with the central and state governing authorities for better infrastructure facilities and uninterrupted power supply. Trade specialists from the sector hope and estimate a better performing period as they see the consumption going up in both in rural and urban segments, thanks to the increasing disposable income levels and change in the lifestyles.