Cold treats in tropical climes might be the stuff of dreams, but India does not even slurp down half as much ice-cream as the rest of the world.
A seminar to be held in the city next month aims to focus on the ice-cream industry and generate discussion on milking its huge business potential.
In India, a person consumes, on an average, 300 ml of ice-cream per year. This is paltry compared to the world average of 2.3 litres per capita per annum. And countries such as the US (22 litres), Australia (18 litres) and Sweden (14 litres) are clearly devouring softies, and sundaes in far vaster quantities.
“India has the right climate for ice-cream consumption but has a very low per capita consumption,” said a note on the upcoming seminar. “A large untapped potential business is waiting to be explored.”
The west zone of the Indian Dairy Association (IDA) will be organising the day-long seminar in Mumbai on December 7 on the sidelines of a larger dairy expo at Goregaon. Titled “Ice Cream for Everyone, Everyday, Everywhere”, the national seminar aims to bring all players in the field together and will cover various aspects of the dessert including its manufacture, packaging, marketing and profitability, and even a small segment on its history.
Though per capita consumption of ice-cream is low in the country, it has risen compared to earlier years. In 1998, it was only 10 ml.
“Newer varieties such as low-fat and diabetic ice-creams, and new flavours has led to an increase in consumption,” said RD Kokane, vice-chairperson of the IDA, west zone.
Business is getting hotter for the dessert, with the Indian ice-cream industry estimated to be worth Rs 2,000 crores and growing at a rate of approximately 12% per annum, Kokane said.