Will Chakna Ride the Coattails of AlcoBev’s Stupendous Sales?

by Mischelle Rebello

May 10, 2020 | 01 min read


It’s Chakna Time

IF you’re anything like us, then you would have lapped up the news and memes about alcohol consumption in the last two days. The best meme hands-down has to be about the one with helicopters showering India’s boozards with moongfali (peanuts).

As absurd as the memes were, we wanted to check our data to see if it was raining snacks in the market. Also, since last week’s newsletter was portentously about alcohol, we thought this week’s should be about alcohol’s BFF “The Chakna”.

The snacks category had taken quite a beating in the early days of the lockdown just as any other non-essential category. Bizom data showed that people at first panicked and bought essential items. They didn’t mind downtrading their brands in the first two weeks of the lockdown.

After their needs were met, consumers started looking at their wants. Or they started looking at product categories that fell between needs and wants. Biscuits and cookies were one such category. 

As Karthikay Mehta, Vice President Sales, UNIBIC Foods, said during our webinar on Ensuring Product Availability in Times of Lockdown, “So basically, biscuits come in between need and want. The large packs are the first to be consumed. Large and value-for-money packs. If you see today, probably Parle G would not have much stock across India because that’s something which will be bought first.”

That brings us to the present of alcohol availability. No sooner did liquor stores open at 7 am on Monday morning than did serpentine queues form outside the stores. It was “alchaos”! Still, in under a day, Karnataka raked in INR 189 crores in revenue from alcohol sales. 

The chakna numbers

It’s only logical to surmise that the sales of snacks, aka chakna, is riding the coattails of the AlcoBev sales. When we crunched the numbers for the 1st week of May alone, there was a 25% increase in the number of orders for snacks from retailers. Just in time to meet the surge in demand due to increased alcohol consumption.

So what really went down? A while back, we had reported that retailers did not panic after the lockdown announcement. They had already stocked Commodities. They did it again to meet the demand for snacks. They had anticipated an easing up on the alcohol restrictions and had stocked up on snacks! Retailers are the oracles of consumer demand. They are able to predict trends better than sophisticated forecasting models.

Loving the spotlight

If you use Bizom and follow Bizom Trends, then you might have already seen our infographic on how retailers were stocking up on beverages. But it’s also a known fact that beverages and snacks go together. And THAT was our very obvious hint to brands to bring out their snacking big guns. *We’ll take a bow*

In Customer Stories

Chirag Gupta, the Co-founder of 4700BC Popcorn talks about the importance of data for his company especially while strategizing product launches and tracking key retail outlets. Watch our customer story

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