Here comes the season of cooking and eating almost everything with butter. Winters bring a unique craving for Parathas with Butter, and being famous amongst consumers for years, Amul Butter has mostly been the first choice.
However, this season, different parts of India, including Delhi-NCR, Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Haryana, and Ahemdabad are facing a shortage supply of Amul butter.
“I’ve been facing this problem for a few weeks now!! My daily customers are returning empty-handed whenever they ask for butter, hence it is affecting my daily business. I’m not able to provide service to my customers,” says Deepak Singhla, a grocery store owner from Noida.
The shortage was first observed in Ahemdabad, as residents took it to Twitter, reporting the shortage of butter in the entire city. Not just Amul but, butter of any brand was available in the city, according to some residents.
Eventually, the shortage of Amul butter started being observed in other parts of the country like Delhi-NCR, Punjab and Haryana when shopkeepers, suppliers, and consumers conveyed complaints about the scarcity.
Citing the problem, a local supplier from Noida, Surendra Kumar said, “The butter is not available from the backend, we are facing daily problems with shortage and not able to fulfil the customers’ demands.”
“There could be two possible reasons behind this shortage, one of them is the Lumpy skin disease, that spread in Indian cows and cattle, and the other could be the high demand for milk during the festive season,” Surendra explained the reason behind the shortage.
A viral disease that affects cattle, the 2022 lumpy skin disease outbreak in India resulted in the death of over 97,000 cattle in three months between July and 23 September. Starting from outbreaks in Gujarat and Rajasthan, in three months cattle in 15 states across India were affected.
While the other reason was also mentioned by R S Sodhi, managing director of Gujarat Co-operative Milk Marketing Federation (GCMMF).
Sodhi mentions that the demand for all dairy products, led by liquid milk, was high during and after Diwali.
“Of all the milk fat generated from milk procurement, 60 per cent goes for liquid milk, the rest for other products, including butter. We have always prioritised liquid milk production. When demand for it rose, we reallocated milk fat for more milk production. As a result, we couldn’t quickly ramp up butter production at the same time. However, the shortage was short-lived and the situation is back to normal now,” he added.
As per industry sources, Amul’s daily milk procurement stands at roughly 27 million litres, while butter is at 150,000 tonnes per annum. While the milk fat content in liquid milk ranges between zero per cent and almost 10 per cent, that of butter and ghee (clarified butter) is at 82 per cent and 100 per cent of the products, respectively.
According to Statista, revenue in the Indian butter segment has been fixed at US$ 6.86 billion this year. The market is expected to grow annually at a CAGR of 5.24 per cent during 2022-2027.