Coimbatore

Fall in orders hits puffed rice production in Krishnagiri

Puffed rice units in Krishnagiri have cut down production by half this year.  

Senthil was compelled to scale down the production of puffed rice this Ayudha Puja season, something that he has not seen or heard about in the oral accounts of the family-run business passed on through four generations.

Krishnagiri is one of the largest producers of puffed rice that gets distributed across the State.

Senthil’s family-run ‘Amudha Pori Mandi’ supplies puffed rice to wholesalers in Chennai, Coimbatore, Salem and Tiruvannamalai. His famous puffed rice mandi, near the market in Krishnagiri town, has seen demand and fall through generations, but never like this one before.

“We had to cut down production by half this year,” says Senthil.

The puffed rice business took a hit this year, largely from the fall in orders that is usually sealed by the first fortnight of August. Now, the retail demand has increased, but the puffed rice producers have limited their production unwilling to take the chance fearing lukewarm response.

Usually the puffed rice production picks up after the pre-orders are sealed by August end. This year, with COVID-19 and extended lockdowns, orders came by only in September-end for the puffed rice producers.

“Orders start to come by the first and the second weeks of August. This year, we got orders only by September end, which was practically nothing.”

Every year, Puja season witnesses production and dispatch of over 30,000 sacks from his mandi. This year, his orders ranged between 15,000 to 17,000 sacks. “A sack contains 100 lts of puffed rice” With just two days to go for the festival, there is a sudden spike in retail demand, but the production has already closed to meet the demand.

“We need a minimum of four days to process puffed rice. There is no time now. But, irrespective of the demand, the price is the same ₹350 per sack,” says Senthil.

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Printable version | Nov 25, 2020 7:11:58 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Coimbatore/fall-in-orders-hits-puffed-rice-production-in-krishnagiri/article32933160.ece

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