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Survival of the breadman during a crisis

24 December 2021 03:51 am - 1     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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What would happen to bread or paan lovers in Sri Lanka with the 450 gram loaf now costing between 70 or 80 rupees? Can they afford it? True enough, health experts would not recommend the traditional loaf of bread as one of the most healthiest breakfast meals. But then we do have a tradition dating back to the 16th century when we started tasting this bakery item when the Portuguese introduced it to us during their rule of this nation. 


And when one sees the convenience of it bread helps the busy schoolgoer and office worker to munch on something tasty, solid and mouthwatering on a hectic day when the traditional plate of rice is absent on the table; may be because the cook or housewife at home is ill or not available. 


The bakery industry has survived several challenges over the past few years, largely because of people being fed with ideas of being health conscious. Their response came in the form of producing bakery products using brown rice and healthy spices. The industry grew over the years despite the challenges with more players entering the market and catering to upmarket customers who demanded variety; even if the price they had to pay for such products was rather extravagant. 

"So whether critics like it or not bread and bakery items have their pride of place on the breakfast table here in Sri Lanka. And to back that industry to the brim there is the All Ceylon Bakery Owners’ Association (ACBOA)"

Then there was the challenge posed during the lockdowns, but these bakery owners got together and convinced the authorities that ‘bread’ and other products made of wheat flour were essential items! The result was the mobile delivery vendors-chun paan velenado-being given permission to roam the streets and sell bakery products on their tuk tuks. This was in the thick of the pandemic’s first wave. The dispatch guy working for the pharmacist, driving a motorbike and coming with your medicine to your doorstep at home got clearance for that type of business much later during the lockdown. 


So whether critics like it or not bread and bakery items have their pride of place on the breakfast table here in Sri Lanka. And to back that industry to the brim there is the All Ceylon Bakery Owners’ Association (ACBOA). This association has constantly nudged the government successfully and got the price of bakery products increased. The latest came on November 28 when a loaf of bread, weighing 450 grams, was increased by Rs 10 to be sold at Rs 80; this was in response to a increase in the price of wheat flour. The ACBOA has also maintained that it would not interfere with the price control of bakery products. 


But since recently bakery owners have experienced a new challenge which has come in the form of exploding gas cylinders. Bakery owners have affirmed that as many as 50% of the bakeries are on the verge of closing down due to this hazard. The bakery industry is also hit hard due to the present dollar crisis because foreign currency is needed to import wheat flour.  


Despite all these challenges the load of bread has not become smaller like the wades and dosas. The bakery owner has kept his load of bread in presentable shape and size and continued to give the customer enough to munch on. 


The country is going green and rice is being promoted as a better alternative to bread from a health perspective. But the chun paan vender is optimistic and races along our streets in his tuk tuk and expects us to play ‘catch-up’ with him because he knows that even if he passes our homes we’d come running to him for our bread. I hear his horn now and have to go!


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  Comments - 1

Order Gifts and Flowers to Sri Lanka. See Kapruka's top selling online shopping categories such as Toys, Grocery, Kids Toys, Birthday Cakes, Fruits, Chocolates, Clothing and Electronics. Also see Kapruka's unique online services such as Money Remittence,Astrology, Courier/Delivery, Medicine Delivery and over 700 top brands. Also get products from Amazon & Ebay via Kapruka Gloabal Shop into Sri Lanka
  • Paan Batta Friday, 24 December 2021 06:20 AM

    Soon they will have to eat and shit their own bread!!!


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Order Gifts and Flowers to Sri Lanka. See Kapruka's top selling online shopping categories such as Toys, Grocery, Kids Toys, Birthday Cakes, Fruits, Chocolates, Clothing and Electronics. Also see Kapruka's unique online services such as Money Remittence,Astrology, Courier/Delivery, Medicine Delivery and over 700 top brands. Also get products from Amazon & Ebay via Kapruka Gloabal Shop into Sri Lanka

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