Bakery industry struggles to survive as raw materials get pricier

Published : 08 Nov 2020 08:11 PM | Updated : 08 Nov 2020 08:11 PM

Prices of bakery products are increasing in Kishoreganj. Against this backdrop, the bakery industry is now on the verge of closing down due to declining profits.

In this situation, the factory owners do not see any alternative but to increase the prices of the products to keep the bakery business afloat. As a result, they are suffering from uncertainty about running the factory. 

According to the local bakery owners' association, several factories were closed during the Corona period. Although the lockdown has been lifted, bakery products do not have the same business as before. 

Although employers cut workers to help ease the crisis,  they are struggling to run their factories at the present time.

The main ingredients in bakery products are palm oil, dalda, sugar, flour and eggs. The prices of these materials have increased step by step and are now being sold at double the price. 

A 186-kg drum of palm oil costs Tk 17,500 instead of Tk 11,500, while a 16-kg carton of Dalda costs Tk 1,520 instead of Tk 1,020, a 50-kg sack of sugar costs Tk 3,000 instead of Tk 2,700 and a 73-kg bag costs flour has to be bought at Tk 2,350 instead of Tk 2,100 and 100 chicken eggs at Tk 850 instead of Tk 600. 

In addition, there are a variety of chemical products (food-made) and product packaging materials, the price of which has also increased abnormally.

There are also hefty costs such as fuel, electricity and labor costs. As a result, selling products is not being profitable compared to the cost of production.

Because the price of the product has remained the same as it was five years ago. In this situation, the factory owners have decided to increase the prices of bakery products.

According to sources, there are 115 small and large bakery factories in Kishoreganj district. Due to the high cost of materials, several factories are still operating. While other factories are still in operation, workers have been laid off to avoid losses. Many factories have reduced production due to declining sales of bakery products. Even then the crisis is not cutting the factories.

The owner of a confectionery, who did not want to be named, said that they are stuck on the wall with the burden of losses. Therefore, the government needs to reduce the price of raw materials to sustain the bakery industry.

Azmal Khan, president of the Kishoreganj Bakery Owners' Association, said the factories are in a crisis due to the business recession and high prices of raw materials. In many cases, the factories are counting the losses.

As a result, most of the factories are likely to close. At the same time, thousands of working people will become unemployed, which is not desirable for anyone.

He added that government initiatives are needed to control the market quickly to protect the bakery industry.