AGARBATTI-MANUFACTURE AND DEALING IN HAIR OILS
AGARBATTI AND SANDAL WOOD STICKS are used to burn as
incense while worshipping and on festivals and ceremonial occasions.
There were 12 Agarbatti establishments in the city. Of these, three
were surveyed in the sample. Agarbatti-manufacturing was the
principal occupation in them, which provided employment throughout
the year. The capital in the two establishments in the sample was
raised by proprietors from their own resources. The third had
incurred debt to raise it. He had borrowed about Rs. 2,000 for
starting the establishment.
Two establishments in the sample were situated in
rented premises. The rent of one was Rs. 10 and of the other Rs. 40.
The third establishment was housed in the owned premises of the
The total cost of production per month of the three
establishments varied from Rs. 130 to Rs. 850. Raw materials such as
scent, charcoal powder, sandal wood powder, bamboo, gum, wrapping
paper, which were mostly purchased from local market as well as from
Bombay, accounted for more than 60 to 70 per cent. of the total
cost. Rent of the premises, transport and postage accounted for the
rest. One of the establishments manufactured 2,556 bundles of
agarbatti and earned about Rs. 150 net income per month. The bigger
shop in the sample produced 10,100 agarbatti bundles and earned
about Rs. 600 net income per month. The two establishments had two
male and 10 female paid employees. Males were paid Rs. 50 and
females Rs. 25 per month.
The process of manufacturing agarbatti consisted of
making a dough out of a mixture of charcoal powder, scent, gum, and
sandal powder in suitable proportions and fasting the mixture around
long thin sticks of bamboo of roughly 9" in length.
Products were directly sold to wholesale dealers.
Business was more or less brisk throughout the year but sales were
more from August to October than in the remaining period of the year
and on the whole it was reported to be profitable.