Consumer staples demand surges in the ongoing wedding season

Demand for staples such as basmati rice, edible oils and maida (refined wheat flour) has increased up to 35% year-on-year in the ongoing wedding season, said industry executives.

The increase in consumption of essential commodities has been witnessed in not only the bigger urban regions but also tier-2 and tier-3 cities, they said.

“We are seeing demand coming in from places like Udaipur, Jaipur, Agra, Kolkata, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Delhi and south India,” said Angshu Mallick, managing director of Adani Wilmar, which sells consumer staples under the brand name Fortune.

According to the Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT), around 3.5 million weddings are expected to be held between November 23 and December 15 this year.

Mallick said weddings have become much bigger events this year, with the gatherings in weddings expanding on average not only in metros but also semi-urban and rural areas. “Our dealers and distributors have stocked more compared to last year. The number of invitees, which stood at 300 last year, has shot up to 500 this year. And this trend is being witnessed in smaller towns and cities where the population is 2-3 lakh,” he said.

The demand for basmati rice has increased 15-20% year-on-year, even as prices of the aromatic rice have gone up 10% due to robust export orders from the Gulf countries.“In this winter wedding season, which is one of the busiest of recent times, we have been witnessing steady growth in demand for basmati rice. Offering a great aromatic culinary experience has always been one of the priorities of families hosting marriage ceremonies,” said Atul Garg, managing director of GRM Overseas, a basmati rice company. “As a result, there has been a 15% increase in procurement demand for basmati rice from dealers and distributors across India compared to the demand during last year’s wedding season. The traders want to maintain the required stock level to meet the increased market demand in the wedding season.”Mallick said edible oil demand has increased 20% year-on-year, whereas the demand for maida has surged 35% in this wedding season.

About 10% of the total estimated weddings this year are expected to be held in Delhi alone, according to the CAIT report. About 50,000 of the total estimated weddings will fall in the luxury category, with expenses of at least Rs 1 crore. Another 50,000 are likely to see expenditure of about Rs 50 lakh per wedding, whereas about 600,000 weddings are expected to see expenses of about Rs 25 lakh each.

The bulk of the weddings, nearly 1.2 million, are expected to incur expenses of about Rs 10 lakh each, whereas another one million weddings are likely to see expenses of about Rs 6 lakh each, as per the report.

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