Thalinomics: Here is the price of a thali in Indian states — and Jharkhand has the cheapest

  • The affordability improved by 29% in the last 13 years for a veg thali. For a non-veg thali, it has improved by 18% for the same time period.
  • Jharkhand has the cheapest veg thali.
  • Jammu and Kashmir and Telangana have the costliest non-veg thali.

The economic survey tabled in the Parliament today gave the average prices of a veg and non-veg thali, and claims that it has turned affordable over the years. As per the survey for an average family of five which has two meals a day, the affordability improved by 29% in the last 13 years for a veg thali. For a non-veg thali, it has improved by 18% for the same time period.

Affordability is a function of food prices with average salaries. However, the survey admits that thali prices have gone up in 2019. Here are the average prices of thais and how they differ across states.

Jharkhand has the cheapest veg thali while Telangana and Jammu and Kashmir have the costliest non-veg thali.

Here is how thali prices vary across states in India in 2019-20:

Veg Thali Prices States
₹50-₹75Himachal Pradesh, Haryana, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Chattisgarh, and Odisha
₹75-₹100Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Telangana, West Bengal, Uttar Pradesh, Assam, Jammu and Kashmir and Punjab
Above ₹100Tripura and Bihar

Non-veg Thali Prices States
₹0-₹50Jharkhand, Chattisgarh
₹50-₹75Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Odisha, Himachal Pradesh and Haryana
₹75-₹100Karnataka, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Andhra Pradesh, Punjab
Above ₹100Jammu and Kashmir, Bihar, Assam, Telangana

The survey states that across India and also the four regions - North, South, East and West - it is found that the absolute prices of a vegetarian 'thali' have decreased significantly since 2015-16 though the price has increased in 2019.


This is owing to the sharp downward trend in the prices of vegetables and dal in contrast to the previous trend of increasing prices.

As a result, an average household of five individuals that eats two vegetarian 'thalis' a day, gained around ₹10,887, on average per year, while a non-vegetarian household gained Rs 11,787, on average per year.

The survey states that 2015-16 can be considered as a year when there was a shift in the dynamics of 'thali' prices. Many reform measures were introduced since 2014-15 to enhance the productivity of the agricultural sector as well as efficiency and effectiveness of agricultural markets for better and more transparent price discovery.


It says that food is not just an end in itself but also an essential ingredient in the growth of human capital and therefore important for national wealth creation. "Zero hunger" has been agreed upon by nations of the world as a Sustainable Development Goal (SDG).

(With IANS)
See also:
Your ‘healthy’ diet is making the Indian economy leaner ⁠— but it’s not for you to change

Tweak your diet to control your food budget— the RBI guide on what to eat