What's So 'Chocolaty' About the Indian Chocolate Industry?

Recent reports say, the India chocolate market will reach $2,457.48 million by 2028. The growth can be attributed to growing population, shifting consumer tastes and rising per capita disposable incomes

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Can a piece of chocolate do away with all your worries? Perhaps, it's not only you, for most people it's their go-to feel-good drug. The India chocolate market was worth $1,687.23 million in 2022 and is expected to grow at a CAGR of over 6.69 per cent to reach $2,457.48 million by 2028, said a report.

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The growth can be attributed to the growing population, shifting consumer tastes and rising per capita disposable incomes. "As a result, consumers are now buying chocolates for everyday consumption rather than just special occasions," quoted a report.

The growing chocolate market is now dominated by health conscious consumers. The industry is also leading in innovative marketing and promotional strategies by manufacturers. "There are sugar-free, organic, vegan and gluten-free chocolates. The rising middle-class disposable income, growing awareness of the health benefits of chocolates such as dark chocolate and innovative marketing and promotional strategies by manufacturers are expected to boost chocolate sales in India during the forecast period," the report added.

When it comes to innovation, Mondelez India, the famous brand behind Cadbury, never fails to amaze. This Valentine's Day, it became the first company to launch its first-ever dinner date on metaverse in India.

''As a brand committed to delivering engaging experiences to our consumers, the growth of metaverse presents a strong opportunity to build immersive brand experiences and memory structures in an unparalleled manner. Our first step towards this was the release of Cadbury Dairy Milk Silk's dinner date Valentine's Day Campaign. Through augmented reality (AR), couples were able to step into a portal and stroll around on the moon. Over a million consumers sent secret messages to their loved ones which were revealed to their partners on virtual moon. Titled, 'How Far Would You Go To Make Them Blush?', making it the first-ever dinner date on metaverse in India," a Mondelez India spokesperson told Entrepreneur India in a previous interview.

"We, as a brand, are excited to see how experiences evolve. The key is to have a constant pulse in understanding what our consumers seek and work towards creating meaningful long term value creation,'' the spokesperson added.

Premium chocolates are a great addition to the country's clean eating trend. The market is also dominated by increased demand for dark and sugar-free chocolates.

Mondelez introduced Cadbury Dairy Milk with 30 per cent less sugar and dark chocolate variants. Similarly, Amul, has also set its sights on the healthy chocolate category, producing 75 per cent, 90 per cent, 99 per cent and 100 per cent dark chocolates.

There is also a demand for environmentally friendly and sustainable packaging. "The country is concentrating on long-term solutions, quickly becoming a business necessity. Food outlets, restaurants, hotels, hospitals, industries, caterers and all other customers in India receive eco-friendly food packaging goods from companies like Evirocor. The increased use of environmentally friendly packaging of chocolates is expected to drive market growth," the report added.

Currently, the chocolate industry is dominated by Mondelez India Foods Private Ltd, Ferrero India Private Ltd, Mars International India Private Ltd, Nestle India Ltd, among others.