E-commerce brings ice cream to the doorstep

Unlike vegetables, ice-cream wa||s difficult to handle till it was packed in insulated bags that stop it from melting for 40 minutes

As the range of products being sold on e-commerce platforms grows, ice-cream makers are not to be left behind. Mother Dairy, Cream Bell and Havmor have started selling ice-cream online in major cities.

Perishables like fresh vegetables have been selling online for a while now, but ice cream was too difficult to handle till it was packed in insulated bags that stop it from melting for 40 minutes.

Big Basket and Grofers are selling ice-cream online and other digital grocers are expected to follow.

Cream Bell, the country’s fifth largest ice-cream brand, has a facility for ordering over the phone. Although coverage is limited to Gurgaon, Noida and Mohali, the market is growing at 40 per cent a year.

Cream Bell recently tied up with Big Basket to deliver in Bangalore and select areas of Delhi. “We are in talks with Grofers to increase the reach. The venture has been fruitful,” says Nitin Arora, chief executive officer, Cream Bell.

Mother Dairy Fruit and Vegetable is building a supply and delivery chain too. Subhashis Basu, business head, dairy products, Mother Dairy, says the company sells ice-cream through Inner chef and Big Basket. It is tying up with Grofers for Mumbai and Delhi.

“Last-mile delivery was a major issue in doorstep delivery. But with chillers and insulated bags, the problem has been solved,” Basu says.

Less than 1 per cent of Mother Dairy’s ice-cream revenue comes from online sales. “The online channel may grow to 2 per cent of total sales in two years, but what is more important is a new channel has opened up,” he adds.

Havmor, the Ahmedabad-headquartered ice-cream company, has a micro site spreadgoodness.in to take orders in Mumbai, Delhi and Ahmedabad.