The ice cream business which amounts to about Rs 4,500 crore annually has been badly hit by the coronavirus spread as it is expected to slowdown by almost 40 per cent. It is unlikely to recover in the current scenario as the rainy season has also begun during which the demand for ice cream decreases anyway.
Prominent dairy products brand Amul’s ice cream sales are expected to come down by almost 50 per cent in the first quarter of FY20-21.
Gujarat Co-operative Milk Marketing Federation (GCMMF) Managing Director Dr. R. S. Sodhi told IANS that the ice cream business was badly affected due to corona and Amul’s ice cream sales could be down by almost 50 per cent in the first quarter of the current financial year. At the same time, the sales of other ice cream companies might go down by 70-80 per cent.
He said, “Due to COVID-19 outbreak, the ice cream sales declined by 95 per cent in March, 55 per cent in April and 70 per cent in May. Although sales of ice cream have improved slightly since the opening of the lockdown, but the demand in hotels, restaurants and canteens is still low.”
“The demand for ice cream at weddings and other such events is also very low, therefore, sales are not going to be more than 30 per cent in June,” he added.
He said that the sales of ice cream from March to June is about 60 per cent but this year the demand was low due to the pandemic outbreak.
Manoj Gupta, a distributor of a dairy company in Delhi, said the sales of ice cream through vendors used to be 70 per cent while it was 30 per cent through retailers but now there are very few vendors and the demand with the retailers has also gone down. The demand this year as compared to last year is only 25 per cent.
However, the World Health Organization (WHO) or any other institute associated with medical and disease control in the world, has not yet said that eating ice cream or cold things spreads the coronavirus, but retailers said that consumption of cold things has reduced in this period, therefore, affecting the demand of ice cream.