The Indian agarbathi industry is a significant contributor to the country’s booming export economy. The United States of America, the United Kingdom, Malaysia, and Nigeria are currently ranked as the top four countries importing and consuming agarbathi from our country. These markets have a wide range of top-quality agarbathi to choose from, such as sandal, lily, aqua, lavender, mogra, rose, champa, and lemon which come with oriental, floral, and cosmetic overtones.
Though long perceived as a small cottage industry, the export statistics of India’s Agarbathi industry reflect otherwise. Incense sticks are shipped to over 150 nations and enjoy a sustained demand overseas regardless of the changing economic and political scenarios. India has managed to dominate the market with its premium quality incense sticks notwithstanding the stiff competition from countries like China. Factors such as low labour costs and easy access to top-quality raw materials have led to this growth. Moreover, the Government of India has been lending adequate support to the industry by way of several policies and regulations that directly and indirectly benefit local producers, thereby boosting commerce and export.
Agarbathi exports from India totaled $498.02 million between 2012 and 2016, which was a big accomplishment. Additionally, exports grew at a CAGR of roughly 11.5% over this period, totaling over $100.02 million in growth, which is a record figure for any industry to have accomplished in such a short span of time.
Today, the Indian agarbathi industry which was traditionally growing at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 3.6%, is witnessing double-digit growth. It is currently pegged at ₹8,500 crore, of which exports would account for a whopping ₹1,000 crore. Furthermore, by the end of the 2021 fiscal year, agarbathi exports have been predicted to go up by an additional 15%.