The 16th edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL 2023) is currently underway engulfing the nation with interesting matches amidst the slugfest. But India is currently glued to another interesting match between dairy players Amul and Nandini, that has emerged with a massive political outrage with Amul’s entry into the Bengaluru market.
Amul Vs Nandini, How It All Began
The tussle between Amul and Nandini began with Amul’s Twitter announcement that stated its expansion in the Karnataka dairy market.
Amul tweeted, “A new wave of freshness with milk and curd is coming to Bengaluru. More information coming soon, #LaunchAlert”.
This raised alarm in the southern state and the Gujarat Cooperative Milk Marketing Federation (GCMMF) became the centre of backlash along with the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party. The counterblast followed both on-and-offline protests, with hashtags like #Savenandini and #GobackAmul trending on Twitter.
While Amul has clearly stated about selling its dairy product online through e-commerce platforms, the dairy major’s Karnataka entry is like a hot potato for the opposition which is backing the Nandini milk, owned by Karnataka Milk Federation (KMF). Correspondingly Amul’s debut is backed by the ruling BJP.
What’s The Controversy Here ?
Political interference is primarily responsible for the Amul-Nandini ‘milk war’, The controversy, which is currently flaming, was infused a year ago when the Union Home Minister Amit Shah expressed desire for KMF and Amul to merge. Subsequently, BJP’s special interest in the state of Gujarat is another important reason that sparked the controversy as the majority of the population believes Amul’s Bengaluru entry is the party’s attempt to destroy the local brand, enhancing the Gujarat Milk Marketing Federation. The opposition further fuelled the conflict with protests and debates claiming, “Save milk – Save farmers”.
Political statements on the controversy (source media reports)
Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai said, “Nandini’s market reach is wide, there is no need to fear Amul”.
Siddaramaiah, Leader of Opposition, Karnataka Legislative Assembly tweeted “PM Modi, avare, is your purpose of coming to Karnataka is to give to Karnataka or to loot from Karnataka? You have already stolen banks, ports & airports from Kannadigas. Are you now trying to steal Nandini (KMF) from us?”.
State Congress Chief DK Shivakumar said, Nandini is better than Amul and we don’t need any substitute for it. He emphasised the state is rich in milk production and has good soil and water and hence doesn’t require the latter.
State Cooperation Minister S T Somashekar restated no merger between KMF and Amul. He said Amul milk is sold at Rs 57, per liter whereas we sell at Rs 39. Our product has a prominent presence in Tamil Nadu and other states and so it is impossible to erase the brand, Nandini.
The Price Battle
Toned milk price: Amul’s per litre cost is Rs 54 and Rs 52 in Delhi and Gujarat respectively. Nandini’s per litre price is Rs 39 in Bengaluru.
Full-cream milk price: Amul Gold full cream milk costs Rs 66 in Delhi and Rs 64 in Gujarat. Subsequently, Nandini’s price is Rs 50 in Bengaluru for 900 ml.
The price of curd offered by Nandini is Rs 47 per kg cheaper in comparison to Amul’s Rs 67 per kg.
The Product Line
According to its official website, apart from milk Nandini’s wide range of dairy products includes UHT milk, flexipack milk, curds and fermented dairy products, ghee, buttermilk, milk powder, ice-creams and frozen desserts, milk sweets, chocolates etc.
While Amul is a bigger name and is popularly known for its wide range of offers, its dairy products, according to its official website, includes beverage products, ice cream, ghee, butter, paneer, cheese, curd and other milk sweets.
With Karnataka polls scheduled for May this year, it will be interesting to see how all the parties ‘milk the milky battle’.
Source : BusinessWorld April 11th 2023