Matchboxes to get costlier, price to increase after 14 years

Asia's Tech News Daily

#Business, #Economy, #India, #matchbox, TOI

According to the manufacturers, 14 items are needed for making matchboxes.

After a period of 14 years, the All India Chamber of Matches in Sivakasi has decided to increase the cost of matchboxes. From December 1, the cost of a matchbox will be doubled from Rs 1 to Rs 2.

As per the TOI report, the decision was taken due to the recent increase in raw material prices and inflation.

The last hike in prices was in the year 2007 when the rate of a single box was increased from 50 paise to Rs 1. Prior to that, in 1995, the cost of matchbox was increased from 25p to 50p.

According to the manufacturers, 14 items are needed for making matchboxes.

The price of a kilogram of red phosphorus which is an important material rose from Rs 425 to Rs 810. The price of wax rose from Rs 58 to Rs 80. The prices of outer box board rose from Rs 36 to Rs 55 while that of the inner box board rose from Rs 32 to Rs 58.

In addition to that, the manufacturers also said that the rising costs in acquiring items like paper, splints, potassium chlorate and sulphur have also led to the rise in the price of the matchbox.

The secretary of the National Small Match Manufacturers Association VS Sethurathinam told the The New Indian Express that said apart from soaring raw material costs, the increasing fuel prices and toll fees had also added fuel to the fire.

He also added that the pandemic had a cascading effect on the matchbox industry.

“The ocean freight charges were increased due to the delay in shipping movements during the pandemic triggering a hike in the price of raw materials,” he said.

In conversation with TOI, he said that the manufacturers are selling a bundle of 600 matchboxes with 50 matchsticks in each box for Rs 270 to Rs 300.

“We have decided to increase the selling price from our units 60 percent to Rs 430- Rs 480 per bundle. This is excluding the 12 percent GST and cost of transportation,” he said.

The state of Tamil Nadu is a major supplier of matchboxes across the country and is also a leading exporter.

In the state, at least 320 manufacturing units of various sizes and over 1500-job work units function providing jobs to more than 4 lakh people both directly and indirectly of which women constitute 90 percent of the workforce.

The origin of the safety match factories dates back to 1922 when two workers Ayya Nadar and Shanmuga Nadar set up the first factories at Sivakasi.

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