A few years ago, George Ramapuram fell seriously ill and preservative-induced food was a total no-no. So, the Coorg family decided to make it themselves!
The Earth Reserve was formed in 2017 and is based in Coorg. It has nine people and makes jams, pickles and preserves.
So far, so normal. But two things that will make their products the most unique bottle on your shelf.
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Firstly, they get fruits entirely from the wild and organic – no farms, no harmful chemicals.
Every day, a couple of hands to go into the wilds of Coorg and collect organic ripe fruits, spices and vegetables. The fruits are then sun-dried.
And here’s the second fantastic thing about these products – 64-year-old Sheela handmakes these delicious jams and pickles and is involved until the very last step. You will be eating preserves made from the hands of a mother – literally!
Now that is special indeed.
How it all came about:
“Contains artificial colouring and preservatives”- a sign that should ideally motivate one to keep the product back in the shop shelf. For the sake of convenience, we continually risked our health.
For 27-year-old architect George Ramapuram, this realisation came after months of hospitalisation, due to a pancreatic condition he had developed.
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“We were forced to go out hunting for jams, pickles and juices that contained no preservatives but we could not find them in the market. Back when we were young, this was no problem. Our mothers and grandmothers would always have containers of such foods ready. When we found it nearly impossible to get preservative-free food in the market, we decided to go back to those roots,” Thresi, George’s sister shares with The Better India.
At the time, Thresi had just returned from the USA and was caring for her ill brother. The two bounced ideas off each other to see if this can be scaled on a market level.
Preservative-free, organic, handmade foods. Would people like them?
The two had grown up eating jams, pickles and juices made from the wild fruits that grew in their backyards.
Plums, figs, passion fruit and mango – all grew in their hometown of Coorg. Their mother, Sheela, would pluck them, dry them and make them into delicious preserves for the children to have.
The jams and pickles were always made in abundance and shared with friends and family. What Thresi and George wanted was for these to be sold commercially so people across India could get the goodness of preservative-free handmade food at the click of a button.
“It was an exciting but quite ambitious project. Asking mom to make jams and pickles for friends and family is one thing. But making a business from this idea also requires us to consider costs, resources as well as the responses we may get. Plus, we wanted our products to be purely handmade, so that was another challenge,” she adds.
Through cautious experiments, the Ramapuram trio set a process for The Earth Reserve.
And the idea has worked indeed.
“We hadn’t expected such a positive response from not just Karnataka but also Delhi, Madhya Pradesh and several other states. We are excited to expand into bath and body ranges too!” Thresi says.
Completely organic and handmade, just like your grandma made them, these food preserves are as healthy as they are tasty. Click here to purchase them and make a tasty addition to your kitchen!
(Edited by Vinayak Hegde)
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