Jodhpur Entrepreneur’s Organic Food Brand Supports Local Farmers

Green Sense ethically sources food from over 40,000 farmers.

May 24, 2020

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What’s on your plate? Do you know where your food comes from or how it is grown? Today, most people live in urban areas that are far from farms so we cannot always answer these questions. But these are the same questions that Jodhpur Entrepreneur Siddharth Sacheti asked himself and that’s why he decided to open an organic food company.

The 35-year old didn’t think much about what he was eating until he lost someone, he was close to who had cancer. That was a life-changing event, he told The Better India. That’s when he began to question everything, including the food he ate.

“Losing someone close to me drove me to work towards making organic food more accessible to people in the country. This was the beginning of Green Sense,” Sacheti told Better India.

But the story didn’t begin in India. Sacheti had never heard of organic food until 2007 when he was studying for his masters in business and IT at the University of Melbourne in Australia. Like many, he worked part-time in a supermarket while he was studying.

“Up until then, organic food was so alien to me as the concept hadn’t evolved in India. It was only after working at the supermarket that I got introduced to it, read up on its benefits and learnt how it can deter lifestyle diseases like cancer,” he said.

Upon his return to India, he knew he wanted to start an organic food company but he didn’t know anything about agriculture so Sacheti started visiting farms and villages to learn. In 2009, he launched Green Sense which is under the umbrella of Agronic Food and headquartered in Jodhpur, Rajasthan.

The company said on its website that their aim: “[is to] strive to ensure maximum purity, quality and potency with a holistic approach to well-being.” Green Sense’s focus is to grow food that is organically produced, environmentally friendly, and sustainable.

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But first, he had to educate farmers on how to run organic farms and become organically certified and he had to make it worth the farmers while to do so.

“While buying the produce, we pay the farmers a higher price than what they would otherwise get from selling in the local mandis [markets]. Earlier, we were only working with small-time farmers who owned only one or two acres of land. But, with time, we also got in touch with farmers’ collectives and that helped us build our network,” Sacheti told Better India.

He started small by just sourcing organic produce, grains, lentils and spices from local farmers. And now, a decade later, Green Sense sells over 220 different types of organic food. The company works with over 40,000 farmers and sells its products in over 21 countries.

“The first three years were full of struggles because back then, organic was a novel concept. Not many people had an idea of what it was exactly about. There were difficulties in sourcing, certification, and transportation and figuring out one’s way in this sector was challenging. It took me six months to crack the first deal and deliver efficiently,” Sacheti said.

The company’s products vary from virgin coconut oil, rice, flours, ayurvedic herbs, dried beans, spices to a new line of Feel Good Teas and latte blends. They even sell special immunity bundles of products with health benefits.

All of Green Senses food products are organically certified by India Organic, USDA Organic, and have several other certifications. The products are available on the company’s website and are sold in supermarkets and organic stores.

But Good Sense says it is not just about selling wholesome food, the company also gives back to the local communities and improves the quality of life of their farmers. Good Sense set up a school in Kham Village in Udaipur, Rajasthan that is supervised by the NGO Seva Mandir. There are 120 kids ranging in age from six-to-14 enrolled and the school is growing.

Sacheti is an example of a person rising from adversity like the death of a friend to finding a way to make life better for so many people. Not everyone can build a company from the bottom up but we can all do our best to make this world a better place.

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BONNIE RIVA RAS, EDITOR & WRITER
Bonnie Riva Ras has dedicated her life to promoting social justice. She loves to write about empowering women, helping children, educational innovations, and advocating for the environment & sustainability.