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Local milk powder consumption slowly increasing: Maliban

2 April 2024 01:00 am - 7     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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  • Monthly milk powder consumption dropped from 7000 MT to 3000 MT over last few years
  • Points out over 1mn households have returned to market
  • Says bad period is over but progress is slow

Sri Lanka’s monthly milk powder consumption, which almost halved following the economic crisis, due to the price escalation, is witnessing a slight increase, a senior industry representative said.

The monthly milk powder consumption, which was about 7,000 MT pre-Covid, dropped to about 3,000 MT over the last three years, due to the price increases caused by the increase in the US dollar, an increase in global market milk prices and a hike in government taxes. 

However, with the economic conditions slightly improving, over one million households have returned to the market, although the overall consumption remains lower than the pre-COVID levels, Maliban Group Chief Executive Officer Ravi Jayawardena said. He shared his views while addressing a panel discussion hosted by Capital Alliance Limited, which delved into the current trends in consumer spending and post-crisis outlook in Sri Lanka. 

According to Jayawardena, it would take a minimum of two years for the domestic milk powder industry to bounce back to pre-Covid consumption, in terms of volume. 

“We strongly feel that the bad period is over but progress is very slow,” said Jayawardena. Due to the macroeconomic factors contributing to the price increase, about 1.7 million households, out of a total of 5.6 million households, have stopped the consumption of milk and biscuits.He further noted that as the majority of the milk powder manufacturers are importers, the industry is highly US dollar-dependent, therefore has a direct impact from the dollar stabilisation on the prices, despite the global prices fluctuating between 15 and 20 percent.
Jayawardena stated that looking at the current situation, there is a reduction of Rs.150 per kilo of milk powder.

“This is clearly an indication that the prices are coming down but unfortunately, the global milk prices are going up. So, it’s a bit of a hybrid situation. But the prices going up from Rs.375 to Rs.1,200 plus, like what took place over the last two and a half years, will never happen again,” he said. 


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  Comments - 7

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  • Consumers Tuesday, 02 April 2024 07:23 AM

    150 rs reduced and the consumers are flocking to buy?? It's time to stop cracking these jokes!!

    Ajith Tuesday, 02 April 2024 08:08 AM

    Is the proper pricing formula being used now? It was revealed lately in a parliamentary committee investigation that it had not been used to the unfair advantage of and delivered super profits to suppliers. This needs to be investigated thoroughly and any officials complicit in enabling and facilitating this to happen needs to be dealt with to the full extent of the law.

    Dimuthu MMK Tuesday, 02 April 2024 09:00 AM

    That is not the truth. One of the SLPP politician (MR's) right hand has the most shares of Malian and he is playing a game, this is the truth.

    K.K. Balasooriya (General Merchant) Tuesday, 02 April 2024 09:03 AM

    Reason for the drop of sales of local milk food is due to bad quality. Now before the closure of business fabricated news is spreaded.

    shan Tuesday, 02 April 2024 09:16 AM

    We can be proud when some business says the dairy milk consumption is increasing and no more dairy imports.

    Daya Tuesday, 02 April 2024 10:10 AM

    We as a nation must move towards liquid milk and drastically reduce the milk powder for health reasons. Before 1977, we were using liquid milk and with free market milk powder flooded the market and our small time diary farmers went out of the market. The government must formulate a plan to support the small time diary farmers and collection points and increase the duty on milk powder. Denmark is a country producing milk powder, but its difficult to see milk powder in the supermarket shelves as they encourage liquid milk and the Danes prefer to use the liquid milk, possibly for health reasons.

    D Fernando Tuesday, 02 April 2024 01:53 PM

    Consumers will be increased tremendously if you can bring down the price of 400 gms packet to Rs.500/-


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