Pooja Yadav

Has the dishwasher become a part of Indian kitchens post-pandemic?

Recently, brands like Bosch, Godrej Appliances and Voltas Beko have begun advertising their products.

“If no one else invents the dishwasher, I’ll do it myself,” said Josephine Cochrane, who invented the first successful hand-powered dishwasher around 1983. However, it wasn’t until the end of the 20th century that dishwashers caught on with the general public.

Fast forward to today, dishwashers, as a category, is still at a nascent stage in India. Be it manual or machine-enabled, dishwashing is a household chore that involves a soap or gel or scrubber.

Traditionally, in most middle class Indian homes, this chore has been a part of the domestic help’s duties. However, post-COVID, this task became a part of the daily lives of many Indians.

During COVID, the demand for dishwashers increased, in the absence of domestic help.

Is this category still going strong, or has it lost its charm?

“Pre-COVID, the dishwashers market was limited. The market size was hardly 50-60,000 units per annum. The category picked up during COVID, with the market size reaching 1.5-1.6 lakh units per annum. But in 2022, the category witnessed a 10% ‘de-growth’,” shares Neeraj Bahl, MD & CEO at BSH Household Appliances India.

According to a Mordor Intelligence report, the global dishwasher market is projected to reach $7.2 billion by 2025, with a CAGR of over 5% from 2020-25. The dishwasher market in India was valued at around $31 million in 2021 and is projected to reach $56 million by 2026, growing at a CAGR of 9.25%.

Has the dishwasher become a part of Indian kitchens post-pandemic?

Swati Rathi, marketing head, Godrej Appliances, points out, “During the pandemic, we saw the category jumping by 100%. Now, it’s back to pre-pandemic levels. We expect the category to grow over the long-term. It’s still a small and unfamiliar category for Indians at large.”

“Earlier, the category placement at stores was quite low. Currently, the category is placed in a lot more offline stores. There will be a slow build-up and familiarity of this category, over the coming years.”

Some major brands that sell dishwashers in India include IFB, Voltas Beko, LG, Whirlpool, Godrej Appliances, and Bosch and Siemens (both owned by BSH Home Appliances). As the interest in dishwashers grew during the pandemic, these brands began to invest in advertising.

One of the first ads for dishwashers, appeared in 2020. It was by Voltbek Home Appliances. The digital video commercial (DVC) showcased a range of dishwashers and how to used them during COVID-induced lockdowns.

In 2020, Bosch India launched its first digital campaign, titled ‘Indian Kitchen ka Dishwasher’, to educate the consumers, bust the common myths about dishwasher usage and highlight how they can be used in the most efficient way. Since then, the brand has launched six digital films on dishwashers.

Current scenario

Recently, we’ve seen brands like Bosch, Godrej Appliances and Voltas Beko advertise big time in this category.

Bosch claims to be the market leader in the category, with more than 50% share. Bosch India’s dishwasher was featured in ‘MasterChef India’ 2023. The brand is advertising on social media, OTT, and online partners like Amazon and Flipkart.

“We prefer to be online and on OTT, going forward, rather than on television,” shares Bahl of BSH Household Appliances India.

Voltas Beko launched a ‘Smart Hygiene’ DVC for its range of dishwashers in 2022. Through the DVC, the brand talks about how dishwashers have become a part of Indian homes. The ad highlights the ‘hygiene wash’ feature that uses water at 70 degree Celsius to remove bacteria and other germs.

Prasenjit Basu, head of marketing at Voltbek Home Appliances, mentions, “Dishwashers have remained a nascent category in India for almost 10 years. It didn’t fit into an Indian household because of its European concept, until COVID, when there was a paradigm shift, in terms of the need for dishwashers. Post-COVID, there’s been fractional growth.”

Recently, Godrej Appliances made its foray into the market, with a range of Godrej Eon dishwashers.

Sharing his views on the current industry scenario, Anand Ramanathan, partner, Deloitte India, says, “In India, the dishwasher industry hasn’t yet reached its full potential. While COVID did lead to an increase in the demand for home appliances, including dishwashers, the adoption rate in the country is still relatively low, as compared to other countries.”

“One of the major challenges in this category, is the lack of awareness among the consumers about the benefits of using a dishwasher. Additionally, the upfront cost of purchasing a dishwasher, can be a barrier for many consumers, as it’s often seen as a luxury item.”


The major challenge that this category faces, is the concept itself. Today, many Indians aren’t even aware of this category, and some tend to compare the cost of dishwasher to the salary of a domestic help.

Typically, a dishwasher’s price starts at Rs 15,000, with mid-range models costing anywhere between Rs 22,000 and Rs 60,000. Whereas, a domestic help can charge anywhere between Rs 800 and Rs 3,000 per month, depending on the city and locality.

As per Bahl, there have been many myths associated with this category, in terms of hygiene, water consumption, kitchen space, expenses, etc.

“The biggest challenge is that the dishwasher is still not a product that can fit inside an Indian kitchen. The average kitchen size in the country isn’t that big. So, dishwashers have to be kept outside the kitchen. Dishwasher sales will go up by 10 times the day it becomes a part of the kitchen.”

Nisha Sampath, a brand consultant and founder, Bright Angles Consulting, shares that dishwashers are perceived as ‘expensive’. They fall in the ‘nice, but not essential’ category of household appliances, unlike washing machines.

“Many people believe that the Indian style of cooking, with oil and spices, leads to heavy utensil stains that are cleaned suboptimally by a dishwasher.”

As per a study in ‘The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology’, commercial dishwashers and rinse agents can negatively affect gut health. The residue from rinse agents is often left behind on dishes after they’re cleaned in professional-grade dishwashers. This residue further damages the gut’s natural protective layer that can contribute to the onset of chronic diseases.

Rathi of Godrej Appliances, however, claims that the dishes are typically cleaner in a dishwasher.

“In a regular wash, we often find residue, whereas in a dishwasher, because of its heat factor, the germs and residue get erased.”

According to Basu of Voltbek Home Appliances, the category is quite segmented to certain cities such as Bengaluru, Mumbai and Chennai.

Even though the Indian dishwasher market is exhibiting a steady growth, according to market leaders, it’s expected to grow on a long-term basis over the coming 5-6 years.

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