For those, who avoid oily and traditional sweets can now gorge themselves on baked gujiyas stuffed with dry fruits and which are also available in different flavours.
The confectioners have come up with novel ideas in sweets, snacks and thandai. One can find the trays of sweets well decorated with varieties of colourful gujiyas of different flavours displayed in the shops and restaurants across the country, particularly in north India during Holi, the festival of colours.
Gujiya is a traditional local Indian sweet and has a good demand during Holi. Traditionally, gujiya was prepared with 'maida' stuffed with 'mava' or 'khoya' and dry fruits, and after fry it was dipped in sugar syrup. But, now sugar free, oil free and baked gujiya is also available in the market.
Gujiyas stuffed with a mixture of khoya and chocolate chips topped with chocolate syrup attract youngsters, said Firoz H Naqvi, Director, Federation of Sweets & Namkeen Manufacturers (FSNM) who expects good business sweets and snacks this year.
Gujiya is a popular sweet dish in Holi as it shares over 50 per cent of the total business of sweets while the total turnover of the sweets and snacks across India remains from Rs 8,000 crore to Rs 10,000 crore on this festival, said Naqvi.
Sales of Thandai accounts for nearly 10-15 per cent sales, he added.
Talking to IANS, FSNM Director said that it is an opportunity to the sweets and snacks manufacturers to bring innovations into their business and expand the trade post the Covid-19 pandemic, that has failed to dampen the festive spirit.
The branded sweets and snacks manufacturers have brought gujiyas in a wide range of flavours with foreign ingredients, roasted coconuts and baked recipes.
Pushpendra Sharma, Mithas Sweets and Restaurants told IANS that he has brought delicious chocolate gujiya apart from baked gujiya and Gulkand Gujiya which attract customers a lot.
He said that baked gujiya has attracted good demand as it is oil free and a healthy sweet dish.
Haldiram, a big brand in the industry, has introduced cranberry, a popular superfood, in kesar gujiya for the first time which attracted good demand, said Ankit Chawla, Senior Manager, Haldiram Products (R&D).
He said Haldiram's packed sweets and namkeen have picked up good demand from online buyers during Covid-19 pandemic and sales have increased this year on Holi as compared to last year. Haldiram has also introduced a new product of baked Spanish corn recently, he added.
India's one of the major packaged snacks brand Bicano has also brought a wide range of Gujiya with different flavours and thandai apart from snacks during this Holi.
Manish Agrawal, Director, Bikano, said that he has launched gujiyas and thandai in different flavours.
According to Agrawal, demand for packaged food items has increased during covid-19 pandemic and post covid period and his company's sales have increased around 10-15 per cent in the past seven months.
Despite covid-19 restrictions the major of Madhya Pradesh sales of Bhanwarilal Mithaiwala of Indore remained least affected.
Anil Saini of Bhanwrilal told IANS that 2-day lockdown has been imposed for Sunday and Monday when Holi is celebrated in the City but customers have already bought the sweets so, covid-19 restriction left no impact on confectionary business.