Chai and biscuits – the go-to combination for every morning and evening snack in Indian households. It’s the first thing offered to guests, and it fuels both formal and informal conversations, whether in a house or a boardroom. Nearly 64% of Indians drink tea regularly, so it’s no surprise that when biscuits were first introduced in India, they became an instant hit among consumers. Some of these biscuits, like Parle-G, became a class leveller, enjoyed across multiple sections of society.
India’s biscuit industry has come a long way from simple glucose biscuits. These on-the-go snacks now come in myriad flavours, textures and concepts, sweet and savoury, from classic to decadent cream-filled ones and salted, cheese or herb-flavoured biscuits. In addition, there are functional biscuits catering to specific requirements like multigrain, sugar-free, high protein, millet-based and baby biscuits. All are readily accepted by consumers across age segments, who are always eager to try something new.
The Classic Sweet Biscuits:
Sweet, crunchy, and dependable. These are the classic, safe biscuits in the original commercial flavours that have been around forever. Many big brands in the biscuit industry, like Parle-G and Marie Gold, primarily sell them with little to no change in their recipes over the years. There were a few flavour variations in between, of course, like Horlicks Elaichi biscuit or Britannia Marie Orange. Britannia also launched the Good Day range, the buttery versions of the classic biscuit.
Recently, after Lotus Biscoff entered the Indian market, a few Indian brands sought to offer their version of this caramelised, cinnamon-infused biscuit, but in a more affordable price category, like UNIBIC’s Biscott.
Crackers have also gained popularity, with several dessert-flavoured innovations on the basic sweet-salt version. Mayora’s Coffee Joy Thins, Malkist Chocolate Crackers and Malkist Cappuccino Crackers are popular products in this segment.
Also popular among younger children are twists to the basic chocolate chip cookies, like Hide & Seek Biscuit, Britannia Tiger Krunch and Cadbury Chocobakes Choco Chip, among others. These retain all the chocolatey joy of choco-chip cookies, but as biscuits, they are harder and crunchier than cookies, thus offering a new textural experience.
Symega offers a wide range of popular biscuit flavours – vanilla, milk, butter, chocolate, and more – to cater to this all-time classic category of biscuits.
Cream Sandwich/Cream-Filled Biscuits:
This is the most popular segment of biscuits across age groups, especially among children. Despite being around for many decades, their demand hasn’t waned, and manufacturers are also constantly upping the ante by introducing new flavours and concepts in this category. The basic ones are available in various flavours, including chocolate, vanilla, orange, pineapple, mango, elaichi and strawberry.
Although chocolate remains the most popular flavour, it has evolved from basic cream biscuits to decadent, molten cream-filled biscuit centres that create an interesting textural experience, like Sunfeast Dark Fantasy and Hide & Seek Milano. In addition, Sunfeast Mom’s Magic now comes with interesting filling flavours like Butter and Cashew. Manufacturers also offer popular dessert flavours, like Cadbury Oreo Red Velvet Cream and Nutella biscuits, elevating the simple biscuit experience. Another emerging trend is chocolate-dipped cream biscuits like Cadbury Oreo Dipped Cookie and Sunfeast Dark Fantasy Desserts Choco Nut Dipped.
Dark Fantasy has a separate range called Desserts, which features these soft-centre biscuits, some with added chocolate dipping. This desire to turn biscuit consumption into a bite-sized dessert experience has led to innovations with different textures and flavours across the industry.
Connect with us to explore our assortment of fruit, dairy and dessert-inspired range of flavours, and natural colour options for those golden crusts and enticing centre-fills.
Today, many health-conscious consumers and people with diabetes hesitate to consume biscuits regularly because of their sugar content. Manufacturers are trying hard to close this gap between regular and occasional consumers. This means finding ways to make biscuits acceptable and accessible to every dietary-restricted group.
Enter sugar-free biscuits. Products like Sunfeast Farmlite Digestive, Nutri Choice Sugar-Free Cracker, Diabexy Peanut Cookies Sugar Control, and Unibic Sugar-Free offer tasty alternatives for people with diabetes. Tiffany even offers a sugar-free range of cream-filled biscuits with flavours like Chocolate and Orange, among others. In addition, a few start-up brands like Ketofy and Artinci sell keto cookies made of almond flour and are both sugar-free and grain-free.
Healthy Multigrain Biscuits:
With maida or all-purpose flour coming under a lot of fire for its harmful impact on the gut, manufacturers have started offering multigrain biscuits. Whether they have a multigrain or oats base, seasoned with dry fruits or tiny chunks of berries, these biscuits are rich in fibre and are loved by consumers of all ages. With established brands like NutriChoice and Parle-G developing oats biscuits and newer players like Azista Taste Good Karela Biscuit coming up, this category has been seeing steady growth. Special shoutout to WheaFree, which offers allergen-free biscuits that are gluten-free, sugar-free, lactose-free and contain no soy or nuts either!
Symega offers sugar-reduction solutions and flavours to complement your sugar-free and other healthy biscuit creations.
High Protein Cookies:
With a rise in healthy snacking and protein consumption, brands have adopted new high-protein concepts for gym-goers and dieters. For example, Maxx Protein has developed a range of high-protein snacks, including cookies that are high in protein, multigrain and sugar-free and can be used as a meal replacer or a post-workout snack. Threptin Diskettes are protein-laden cookies made with Bengal gram that are easy to digest and can be consumed by kids, the elderly, the health-conscious, and convalescents. They are also available in a sugar-free, low-fat version and are recommended as a pre-workout snack or a meal. But gram or whey protein isn’t where it stops. Manufacturers have also been exploring including nutrient-dense ingredients, such as seeds, in their biscuits.
NutriChoice has started a line of biscuits with a mixed array of seeds like chia, flax, pumpkin, and sunflower.
Millets lately have been growing in popularity across food groups. With 2023 being declared the International Year Of The Millets by the United Nations, consumers and manufacturers have much more interest and demand for innovation in millets. Furthermore, with more people joining the gluten-free bandwagon, millets are now considered a tasty alternative. Manufacturers are happy to cater to this demand with products like NutriChoice Essentials Ragi Cookies, Health Sutra Jowar Biscuits or even multi-millet options like Slurrp Farm Healthy Ragi Cookies, Grami Superfoods Ragi Millet Cookies, etc.
Working on Millet Cookie concepts? Look no further than our newly developed portfolio of millet-based cookies. With over 15% millet content and available in delightful flavours, these concepts could help you launch winning products in differentiated flavours.
Manufacturers are catering to the needs of the most varied segments, including babies. Some brands have created cookies designed explicitly for the needs of teething babies and Baby Led Weaning (BLW). These biscuits are sugar-free, made with millets for added calcium, and loaded with nutrients. They are free from additives, which makes them safe for children, and often come in shapes that are easy for them to grab onto and bite. These biscuits are designed for teething babies to relieve their gums. These are usually covered by brands that cater to baby foods, such as Happy Baby Organic Teethers, Gerber Snacks for Baby, Farley’s Rusks, and Early Foods Multi-Millet Jaggery Cookies.
If there’s one thing that consumers have loved most about biscuits, it’s their versatility. Although sweet and chocolate biscuits are more common, several popular brands also provide savoury options. Whether it’s classic flavours like Britannia 50-50 Maska Chaska, herb-scented masala biscuits, jeera, and simply salted, or newer exotic flavours like Monaco Piri-Piri or Mayora Malkist Cheese Crunchy Layered Crackers, these options cater to all kinds of cravings and palates.
Lately, there has been a trend of potato biscuits replicating the experience of eating chips while maintaining a biscuit-like texture. These are crispy and filling, yet thin and snappable, and are versatile in their savoury flavour profiles that open the biscuit industry to an array of chip flavours like zesty Achari Kairi, Spicy Jalapeno, Cream n Onion, etc. Many big brands have started their variations of potato biscuits, like Sunfeast All Rounder, Unibic Snappers Potato Crackers, Britannia 50-50 Potazos and Camcall Pran Potata Biscuits. Being a leading provider of seasonings and spice blends in India, Symega’s experience and expertise in savoury solutions – be it the classic masala, sizzling hot chillis, or exotic and international flavours – will elevate your salty crackers and potato biscuits to the next level
To explore new opportunities in the biscuit industry and gain a competitive edge, partner with Symega for co-development. Tell us your ideas and we will help you transform it into a viable product. For business enquiries, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org