Cost Of Veg Thali Rises Higher Than Price Of Non-Veg Thali

In a report released by the ratings agency – CRISIL – it was indicated that the average cost of a vegetarian thali meal hiked by 5% since last year. The Rice Roti Rate report – which considers a standard thali meal to comprise of roti, rice, dal, vegetables (onions, tomatoes, potatoes), salad and curd, mentioned that base prices of such a meal increased from ₹26.6 to ₹28 in January this year. What was also most interesting to note as per the survey was that the cost of non-vegetarian thali meals had seen a 13% decline in prices, with costs dipping to ₹52 from the initial ₹59.9 in the same period.

While the parameters for a non-vegetarian thali remain pretty much the same as its vegetarian counterpart, the only element that changes is the replacement of dal with broiler chicken. On further research, it was observed that the inflated prices of essential ingredients like onions and tomatoes were one of the key reasons, with a 35% and 20% rise respectively. Similarly, the prices of rice and lentils had also spiked during the time period, with rates increasing by 14% and 21% respectively. While further data is yet to be released on the matter, the retail rates for vegetarian thali meals have also been higher than the 6.52% that occurred in the previous year, with food inflation at 5.94%.

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Subsequently, as retail inflation for the same meal stood at 5.69% in December 2023, food inflation rates were as high as 9.53%. On the flipside, the cost of broiler chickens declined by 26% due to higher production rates, as the ingredient accounts for 50% of a non-vegetarian thali. However, when compared to 2023, the cost of both types of thali meals have decreased by 6% and 8% respectively, due to export curbs leading to an increased supply of onions and tomatoes within local markets, as well as the arrival of fresh supply from northern and eastern states in India.