The Indian tissue and hygiene market is very small and largely untapped. The tissue and hygiene category in India is divided into four different segments - Away-from-home tissue and hygiene, Retail Tissue and Hygiene, Hygiene and Tissue.
Untapped market potential
As per the leading market research firm, Euromonitor, the market size of away-from-home tissue and hygiene segment in the year 2010 is estimated to be Rs 3, 115.5 million; Retail tissue and hygiene market size is Rs 18, 623.8 million; Hygiene market size is Rs 12, 454.2 million; and the Tissue category has the market size of Rs 3, 895.6 million. But what’s the reason behind the low penetration of tissue and hygiene market in India? The reason could be lack of awareness and sensitivity/ attention paid towards the hygiene in India.
Lack of awareness in the category
Traditionally in India, very few consumers are habituated of face wipes. The players in tissue and hygiene category needs to pay more attention on generating consumer awareness relating to use and benefit of hygiene related products. One such initiative is taken by Birla Viscose brand - Kara Skincare wipes, which was launched three year ago in 2008, as a new category in the tissue and hygiene care. At first, the challenge for the brand was to educate and create awareness among its target audience – the young consumers, about the use of skin wipes. The brand used BTL and ATL marketing tools which helped it to be recognised among its target audiences.
Urban vs. rural market
About 70 percent of India’s total population resides in rural India. With growing income of the consumers from rural India, the industry is focusing more on producing specific products, SKUs, priced reasonably for these markets. As per Euromonitor International Report, in categories such as beauty and personal care; consumer appliances; homecare and retailing; India ranks close to breaking into top 10 markets in the world by retail value. But India’s global ranking in tissue and hygiene category is world’s lowest in terms of value market share.
Cultural barriers to consumption have prevented the tissue and hygiene industry from scaling the growth heights achieved by other consumer goods industries. Some of the categories such as toilet paper have market potential in urban market only, rural consumers rarely uses toilet papers. Other categories such as baby wipes and diapers are gaining market share in rural market. Still, tissue and hygiene market can be considered as an urban phenomenon but the category has huge untapped potential in rural areas as well.
The increased label penetration of branded tissue and hygiene products is mainly seen in urban areas where the average disposable income is high and they are more aware about hygiene related issues. But in recent times we have seen that leading FMCG bands such as Proctor & Gamble, Johnson & Johnson, Godrej, Dabur etc with their economic product range has been successful in rural India. More consumer centric approach with small packs and lower price range, tissue and hygiene market can successfully establish themselves in rural market.