Industries & Products | Bidi Industry

Bidi Industry in Bangladesh


Bidi industry in Bangladesh

Bidi production is more fragmented than cigarette manufacturing. The top four firms account for a little less than 50% of the market. Most of the bidi factories in operation are household-based. The number of bidi factories in Bangladesh as stated in various studies, ranges from 117 to 9,624[1]. The brand ‘Akiz Bidi’ is the most popular among other bidi brands.

Wages for bidi workers are very low, most bidi workers live in poverty, and many children are also involved as unpaid assistants in household bidi production. Working in the bidi factories stands fourth among the government-listed 38 hazardous jobs prohibited for children.[2]

In 2019, the National Board of Revenue (NBR) released a report titled ‘The Revenue and Employment Outcome of Biri Taxation in Bangladesh’. The report stated that in 2012-13, the tax-paid sale of bidi was 51.19 billion sticks which decreased by 26.7 percent to 37.53 billion in 2016-17. A total of 32,180 persons worked in 198 functional bidi factories in Bangladesh; 94 percent of whom are employed on a temporary daily labor basis. According to the report, ‘bidi factories contract out bidi rolling and tobacco dust filling to contractors who them commission the work to their family laborers; this segment totaled 134,927 workers...An overwhelming majority (75%) of these contract workers were women and children.[3]