October 18, 2022
Sonal Paladini, a yoga instructor living in Rheda-Wiedenbrück, Germany, grew up hearing the jingle “Swaad bhare, shakti bhare Parle-G” in her hometown on the outskirts of Gurgaon, India. Little did she know she’d crave Parle-G biscuits when she got pregnant in 2018. The crisp, rectangular, golden biscuits reminded her of a childhood tradition: her grandfather giving her a pack of Parle-G before she headed off to school.
“I loved [them] instantly because the size was perfect for a toddler’s small fist, and the taste was simple and comforting,” she recalled, adding that they made an easy and affordable treat. “A small packet cost ₹4, and it was the perfect size for me to have for breakfast or as a tea-time snack. My grandfather would dip them in his tea and enjoy them, while I’d sit with him and dip them in a glass of milk.” It was no surprise to Paladini that when her daughter visited India, she instantly took a liking to the same Parle-G biscuits.
Originating in India, Parle-G biscuits are more than 80 years old and became the world’s best-selling biscuit in 2011, surpassing major brands such as Oreos and McVities digestive cookies. Today, people can buy them not only in India but also in the U.S., Canada, Europe, Africa, and other parts of the world. Amid increasing competition and significant moments in history, from the Partition of the subcontinent to the pandemic, Parle-G has remained a familiar favorite, consistent in its branding, and taste, even maintaining the same price point for the past 25 years — or so it seemed.