Karnataka: Not so festive for idol makers, flower vendors, fail to make good profits

Idol makers noted a huge demand for clay Ganesha idols this year due to the ban on PoP idols and flower vendors who had also expected to see a surge in demand, did not see good sales this year.

Published: 18th September 2023 09:13 AM  |   Last Updated: 18th September 2023 09:13 AM   |  A+A-

People purchase flowers and other pooja materials at the City Market on the eve of Gowri-Ganesha festival in Bengaluru on Sunday. (Photo | Shashidhar Byrappa, EPS)

Express News Service

BENGALURU: This festive season has not been merry for Gowri-Ganesha idol makers, and even flower vendors as they did not make the expected profits this year. Kiran Balu, owner of Manjunatha Ganesha and Gowri Idols Works, and four idol making factories in Bengaluru, said that despite increasing the price of idols this year, they have made minimal profits as the cost of electricity and raw materials is high, and so is rent and labour cost, compared to last year. 

He said the rates of both Gowri and Ganesha idols are higher; on an average, wholesale cost of a 1-ft Ganesha idol was doubled, and retail cost was increased by 25 per cent.  Despite being a fourth-generation business owner and selling around 15,000 idols, he made an overall profit of 10 per cent due to the high cost of other commodities. Earlier, rent, electricity, raw material and labour were much cheaper, yielding higher profits, Balu added. 

However, idol makers noted a huge demand for clay Ganesha idols this year due to the ban on PoP idols. Yet, compared to the pandemic years, there is a higher demand for idols this time. Flower vendors in Bengaluru who had also expected to see a surge in demand, did not see good sales this time. Girish Muchal, general secretary, Karnataka Small Flower Growers Association, said demand has been low this year.

Families and even event organisers are using more plastic flowers as they can be utilised multiple times. Citing an example, he said a merchant buying 100 roses on an average was placing an order for only 50 roses. On the contrary, the sale of food commodities did not see a decline, and prices were not hiked either, which spurred customers to buy more sweets and other festival goodies. 


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