Why is Muesli so expensive in India?

Photo by Ovidiu Creanga on Pexels.com

I didn’t know Muesli until I went abroad a little over a decade ago. And once I discovered them, they were my favourite breakfast item.

After moving back to India, I fell back on the comfort of delicious, warm and fresh South Indian breakfasts. Idlis, dosas, upmas, poha, sabudana khichdi (ok, the last two are not strictly South Indian), washed down by a cup of South Indian filter coffee are as different as they come from the traditional continental (European) breakfast.

Having said that, I did miss my Muesli. And when I started to hunt for Muesli in India, I realised that:

  • It is reasonably easy to find, especially on online grocery sites
  • The range is reasonably diverse
  • They cost a bomb!

To elaborate on the last point, a kilo of muesli costs between 1.5 to 2.2 pounds (I am sure they could go higher) in the UK. Even if we assume an average of 2 pounds per kilo, that translates to around Rs. 200 per kilo.

The typical price in India for a kilo of Muesli varies from around Rs. 450 to Rs. 600. It’s safe to assume an average price of Rs. 500. This makes Muesli in India 2.5 times more expensive than Muesli in the UK!

I am curious as to what could be the reasons for this steep differential. Is it that the ingredients for a Muesli are more expensive in India? Is it because the market size is small and therefore, the per unit overhead costs are higher? Or is it simply a case that manufacturers know that the target audience of Muesli consumers can afford to pay these high rates?

I am not an expert, but would love to learn more about this phenomenon. Please do comment if you have any insights.

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