Recent months have witnessed a clutch of marketers lobbying to give the tottering Rs 260-crore chyawanprash market a fresh lease of life.
The old guard of Dabur, Zandu and Baidyanath (which account for over 85 per cent of this market) are now facing a spirited fight from new kids-on-the-block such as Himani, Himalaya and Sivananda. And the new entrants are going a step further than just establishing category presence - - they are attempting to create differentiation.
Take the Rs 550-crore Emami group, which is pushing its Himani Sona Chandi chyawanprash as `all season' health supplement. The idea is to avoid sales dips in summer months.
The Rs 1,000-crore Mayar India is now rolling out some three variants of its Sivananda chyawanprash - - Amrit Chyawanprabha for adults, Special Chyawanprash for the entire family and Bal Chyawanprabha for kids.
So is Dabur's near-generic lead over the chyawanprash market under threat? The company dismisses the challenge. Quoting ORG data, Mr D. Garg, Head, healthcare products division, said "This year, the only chyawanprash brand that gained market share is Dabur - - at 69 per cent now." Mr Garg also ruled out category variants.
With new entrants coming in, Dabur expect awareness and penetration levels to increase. Penetration of chyawanprash is relatively low - - at 4 per cent, and the market can accommodate few quality conscious players.