Soya, sunflower oil sale up as people shun eateries, eat home food

India’s consumption of sunflower and soyabean oils is rising, in step with sinking sales of cheaper palm oil, which is used mostly in commercial establishments, because the lockdown shut hotels, restaurants and catering and increased the consumption of homemade food.

The long shutdown will reduce cooking oil imports by 12% this fiscal, industry executive said.

Import of palm oil, used mostly in restaurants and hotels, is likely to fall 25% but consumption of soya and sunflower oils is expected to rise.

“There was a 40% drop in demand from the hotels, restaurants and catering sector during the lockdown. This sector constitutes about 35% of the total edible oil consumption in the country,” said Sudhakar Desai, president , Indian Vegetable Oil Producers’ Association. He said palm oil was worst hit as it accounts for 65% of commercial demand.

Total cooking oil imports are expected to fall 2 million tonnes to about 13.9 million tonnes, industry executives say. Consumption is expected to fall nearly 9%.

Desai said that soya oil import for the oil year will be 9% higher at 3.4 million tonnes and sunflower oil by 13% to 2.46 million tonnes.

Sandeep Bajoria, president, International Sunflower Oil Association said sunflower oil consumption in 2019-20 will increase by 15% to 2.7 million tonne. “As more and more people cook at home, the household consumption of edible oil has increased. We expect the trend to continue,” he said adding that at Rs 90-93 a kg in wholesale, the sunflower oil prices were competitive.

[Source – Economic Times]


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