Parag Milk Foods Ltd, India’s largest dairy-focused consumer goods brand, said sales of some of its key products has reached pre-pandemic levels, but sales of liquid milk are half their regular volume.
The company, which was hit by the COVID-19 pandemic both because of logistical disruptions as well as a dip in consumer demand, reported revenue of Rs 532 cr for the three months ended September.
This was about 7% higher than last year, but was substantially lower than the Rs 640 cr reported for the same quarter of 2019.
Much of the Rs 108 cr fall in revenue over the last two years can be accounted for by the dip in milk sales.
For example, in the September quarter of 2019, Parag had generated Rs 102.4 cr from the sale of liquid milk, which has fallen to Rs 47.9 cr in the latest period — a decline of Rs 54.5 cr.
Still, said the company, some key categories of milk products, such as butter, cheese, paneer and protein, have reached pre-pandemic levels, and others are expected to do so in due course.
The company sells traditional products like ghee, dahi and paneer under its “Gowardhan” brand, and uses the “Go” brand for items such as cheese, milk, buttermilk, lassi and yoghurt. In addition, it also has a premium brand called ‘Pride of Cows’ that offers milk, lean milk, ghee, curd and paneer.
During the latest period, the company entered the milk shake segment under the Go brand and aims to capture 5% of the market by March.
“We have seen sales coming back to pre-pandemic levels in core categories of Ghee, Cheese, Paneer & Proteins. In fact during the first half, focus was on growing core categories, showing growth of 23% YoY and 36% QoQ.
“We now expect the other categories also to witness growth for the second half,” it said, adding that sales of fresh milk “shall take some time to stabilize to Pre-CoVID levels.”
It also said sales to hotels, restaurants and cafeterias has returned to pre-pandemic levels, and are in fact higher than before COVID-19 hit.
“Mirroring the trends in developed markets and moving to substitutes – the company has launched Milko Cheese , targeting low income group consumers,” it added.
The company said it plans to set up new collection centres and expand in new villages.
“On our endeavor towards increasing milk at our own farm, we are setting up South East Asia’s largest and most modern farm that would increase cow nos 6X & increase milk production to 1,40,000 litres,” it added.