Lockdown wiped out all gains of earlier months; now workforce shortage troubles Dabur

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Published: June 5, 2020 4:25 PM

Coronavirus blues continue to trouble FMCG major Dabur which has seen the gains of a few months leading up to lockdown wiped out entirely.

Dabur’s Q4FY20 weak results were followed by muted management commentary on the near term outlook.

Coronavirus blues continue to trouble FMCG major Dabur which has seen the gains of a few months leading up to lockdown wiped out entirely. The troubles are not over for Dabur which now faces the challenge of scarce workforce. While the country has eased restrictions and has entered Unlock 1.0, the migrant worker crisis is still a sore point for FMCG companies which are now looking to resume operations at full force. “With migrant workers moving back to their villages, the availability of adequate manpower has become a serious issue, hampering scaling up of production to pre-COVID levels,” Amit Burman, chairman, Dabur, told The Indian Express in an interview recently. The Ayurveda-centric company is now sourcing workers from the local to deal with the crisis. 

The company now seeks the government to levy a uniform 5% GST for the entire ayurveda products and medicines categories to help it tide over the crisis. Dabur’s ayurveda range consists of classical, proprietary and OTC products.

Dabur is not the only FMCG company which has raised the issue of migrant workers. Earlier, biscuit maker Parle had also said that the company is facing worker shortages and would be interested in employing people if there are workers available, Krishanrao Buddha, senior category manager, Parle, had told Financial Express Online recently.

In its recently released quarterly results, Dabur said that while the company was on a growth track through the first two months of the fourth quarter of 2019-20, the coronavirus pandemic impacted its business in March. “The lockdown caused severe disruptions in our business and brought sales to a virtual standstill in the second fortnight of March,” Amit Burman said. However, the company saw the sales of its honey and chyawanprash range boom as consumers became mindful of health and immunity. Especially, for the chyawanprash range, Dabur reported a 400% surge in demand. India had imposed a lockdown on 24th March 2020 to keep the spread of the virus in check. 

 

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