Feel like something to chew on? Mid-meal hunger pangs are most common among kids, working professionals and grown-ups. The impulsive food craving to satiate your taste buds make you resort to unhealthy snacking options like chips, aerated drinks, biscuits and junk food.
Snacking is on the rise. It’s now become a major part of our food habits as we Indians simply love it –whether it’s sweets or savories, crunchy or chewy. Increasing disposable incomes, convenience option in a fast-paced lifestyle and paucity of time have fuelled explosive growth in this sector.
Further, consumers’ changing dietary habits and willingness to try new things are pushing these numbers even higher. But snacking need not necessarily be unhealthy. It’s also proven that having healthier and smaller meals throughout the day helps boost body metabolism and aids weight loss. Bengaluru-based health food start-up iTiffin is here to help you curb that uncontrollable urge to binge on unhealthy food items.
Take a Bite, Snack Lite!
Nowadays, people are increasingly becoming health conscious, skipping the high-fat and high-cholesterol food for healthy living. But it’s not always possible for working individuals to pack healthy items for themselves. Hence, iTiffin’s newly launched product ‘The Munch Box’ aims to not just provide healthy nutritious snack options to consumers but to influence the way a consumer thinks of snacks.
When asked about the idea behind introducing The Munch Box, Tapan Kumar Das, CEO, Founder, iTiffin, says, “Snacking is bridging a gap and just like cement that holds bricks together, snacking compliments our meals. If the cement is of poor quality, the walls are weak. Similarly if we eat unhealthy snacks, our health is at risk. We all know that good eating habits facilitate a healthy body.”
Traditionally, Indian snacks are high fat, but The Munch Box’s concept is designed to balance snacks that are low in fat and high in satiety value. Available in two variants – Subscription and Standalone – the box promises to offer a wide range of items like – Cookies, Roasted Namkeens, Ragi Ladoo, Millet-based snacks, Fruit & Nut bars, Baked or Puffed items etc. These snacks are balanced in nutrition, low in fat, high in fiber and portion controlled, with no added sulfites, artificial colours, flavours, and sweeteners.
Promoting Healthy Eating Habits
Apart from offering healthy snack options, iTiffin not only provides balanced, wholesome and delicious lunch and dinner meal boxes, but the team ensures that the boxes are high in nutrition and low in fat to suit consumers’ specific health and wellness requirements.
Speaking on inculcating healthier eating habits and treating themselves to therapeutic lifestyle changes to achieve better results, Das shares, “India is a place of unhealthy eating. The inspiration to start iTiffin came from the youth – i.e., people who are ready to change their eating behaviour patterns for better, but have very limited choice to do so.” At iTiffin, the meal boxes are prepared by a team of nutrition scientists and expert chefs. Later, the meals are packed in high quality packaging material based on European and HACCP Standards.
Increasing Customer Base
Promoting adoption of healthy eating habits, while ensuring food’s quality and consistency with on-time delivery; iTiffin serves more than 10,000 customers in Bangalore with around 2,000 units a day for Rs 250-300 per order.
“Our focus is on healthy eating. While offering healthy food to the customers, we take care of order generation, food production and end mile delivery. We are expecting Rs 100 crore in revenue in the next three years,” reveals Das. Open for strategic partnerships and tie-ups, iTiffin looks to expand its operations in 6 new cities in short-term and further plans to reach out to 30 more cities over the span of three years.
In-house chefs and nutritionists serve customers healthy and customized meals to promote general wellness and help customers manage specific health conditions. Sharing his thoughts on how iTiffin invests in marketing activities to spread awareness and lure more customers, Das emphasizes, “Our major focus is on the product and therefore, we spend on word-of-mouth marketing and other promotional activities. Few basic online and offline activities are designed and executed in-house with a team of experts. But the major part includes creating a healthy eating awareness among people through word-of-mouth.”
Eyeing Growth Fund
To support his aggressive expansion plans, Das is very actively and in close talks with various venture capitalists to raise growth capital. Speaking on the same lines, he adds, “We are looking to raise funds and are already in talks with a couple of investors, and hopefully in few months from now, we will have new fund. We are planning to secure close to 10 million for our multi city-growth plan.” He believes that with urban youth spurring demand and getting more interested towards healthy food and snack, the venture capitalists will soon start investing heavily in this space.When asked about what advice he would like to pass on to the aspiring entrepreneurs in this space, Das unravels, “Emerging entrepreneurs should work on scalable business ideas, with teams having operational expertise and experience, and they should only take money required for tomorrow.”