Parle registers record sales as snacking goes up in Covid-19 lockdown

Parle Products Pvt. Ltd, which owns the Parle-G biscuit brand, saw sales surge during the lockdown, as the firm’s popular cookies and value packs found favour with Indians stuck at home.

This helped the company register better-than-expected growth between March and May and expand its market share by 500 basis points, said Mayank Shah, category head, Parle Products.

“It was primarily because of increase in demand. Consumption was high because people bought more during the lockdown, made new dishes and hoarded food, as a result snacking occasions in India went up.”

The news was first reported by The Economic Times.

Shah said overall, biscuits as a category, did well, as families consumed more packaged snacks at home. Moreover, on-the-move migrants relied on its value packs to sustain. Parle-G has been hugely popular among middle-income households because of its affordable price points.

“Even other players have done well. But we were able to get our act together and register one of the best times in the company’s history,” he said.

Rival Britannia Industries, too, sold more packs of biscuits in April and May, posting 20% and 28% growth in sales (year-on-year), respectively.

This was on account of increased in-home consumption for its brands during the lockdown.

Shah said Parle also registered “strong” growth in its premium Platina range of cookies, which includes Hide and Seek, and Milano brand of cookies. “We saw good growth rates there, too. There was pantry loading happening. Because biscuits have a long shelf life, so people stocked up,” he added.

Shah said the company got permissions to kickstart production within two days of the lockdown; and over the following week several of its factories resumed function.