Early summer brings cheer for ice cream brands in India

Early summer brings cheer for ice cream brands in India
As consumers look for some relief from the heat, ice cream sales are finally reviving after two yearsAncela Jamindar/ BCCL
  • As demand for ice creams and cold beverages increases, India’s consumer companies are amping up their marketing activities and lining up new product launches.
  • Consumer companies are hopeful that the summer season will bring in cheer and serve as a respite from the pandemic-associated slumber.
  • Some leading companies have already witnessed a growth of over 50% this summer.
  • We speak to leading ice cream and beverage companies to find out more about their summer plans.
The COVID-19 pandemic wreaked havoc on businesses of all sizes and kinds. Ice cream and cold beverages, however, were one of the most affected industries.

The industry was severely affected due to several country-wide lockdowns and closing down of consumer marketplaces. A viral rumour linking ice cream to increased COVID-19 risk made the matters worse. While the World Health Organisation did step in to address the rumours, the damage was already done.

After melting under lockdown woes and its cascading impacts for two years, ice cream brands have a reason to cheer this summer. Consumer companies are seeing high demand for ice cream and cold beverages as consumers look for some relief from the sweltering heat.

A spokesperson for Mother Dairy said that the company’s milk-based ice creams and dairy-based beverages have recorded over 50% growth in sales ‘on account of early summers and subsequent rise in temperatures, enhanced number of distribution assets coupled with the opening up of restaurants, offices, educational institutions, etc.’

The leading dairy company is optimistic that this summer, in its current progression, would likely add further momentum going ahead and is going to be ‘one of the best seasons for the ice cream and cold beverages industry.’


“This season, we are introducing 10 new variants of ice creams in order to keep our consumers excited and the highlight for this season is our shahi kulfi range wherein we are introducing four new royal Indian flavors namely Phirni, Paan, Malai and Pista. The offtake of dairy-based beverages is also being witnessed across all channels with thirst-quenching products such as chaach (buttermilk) and lassi (buttermilk) leading the pack,” said a company spokesperson.

Milkshake and ice cream brand Keventers also sees its biggest boom during the hot months of the year. Due to the early onset of summer, paired with intense heat waves across large parts of the country, Keventers’ co-founder Aman Arora said that the company clocked its ‘best sales’ in April this year.

“We’ve seen a good jump in sales, and we’re hopeful this will continue. Our hottest products have been the cold coffees and chocolate milkshakes, but we are seeing some love when it comes to our newly launched ice creams as well. Our goal is to make Keventers something you enjoy year-round, not just during the summer,” said Arora.

As restrictions on travel and social gatherings have been lifted, businesses have resumed across the country and people have started stepping out, out-of-home consumption of ice creams has also seen a small jump.

As per industry experts Business Insider India spoke to, as out-of-home consumption is gearing speed, the surge in demand is skewed towards the impulse portfolio.

Marketing and growth, both back on the fast track

To make the most of this surge in demand, Ice cream and dessert brand Baskin Robbins is upping its marketing game to reach out to a wider set of consumers.

Raghav Ravichandar, the general manager of marketing at Baskin Robbins said, “Our spends at the very least are likely to be 20% higher this summer than in earlier years. While our sales in 2020-21 were lower than earlier years, the recovery in 2021-22 has been both spectacular and also immensely satisfying. We are back on the fast track to high double-digit growth.”

India has experienced a particularly hot summer this year. The hottest March in 122 years was followed by even more intense heat waves in April. As per the India Meteorological Department, April was the hottest month for northwest and central India and the third-hottest April the country has seen over the past 122 years, from 1901 to 2022.

Due to this prevailing hot and humid weather in India, the ice cream and cold beverages industry is expected to grow significantly in the coming years.

As per research and analytics firm Expert Market Research, the Indian ice cream market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 14% between 2021 and 2026 to reach a value of approximately ₹442 billion by 2026.