The increasing health consciousness and awareness among consumers about the hazardous effects of fertilisers and pesticides used in farming methods is compelling them to move over to organic food products. But, owing to its high cost, people are likely to go back to more economical options. Does that mean only the rich can afford these healthier, tastier and more eco-friendly foods?
“Not really,” says Divya Sathyaraj, celebrity nutritionist from the city and daughter of actor Sathyaraj, who is launching her own brand of organic tea and other food products. “My brand is D House Green Tea and I am pricing all my products in such a way they will be affordable for middle class people,” she tells DC.
Divya was in the news for her open letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi regarding an ugly incident she experienced. Apparently, a few manufacturers from the US threatened her after she declined to prescribe the multivitamins marketed by them as they contained harmful ingredients. She wanted Modi to intervene and address the issue.
Talking about how it all started, she reveals, “I was getting a lot of offers from companies to endorse their food products and health drinks, I have never been very keen on doing advertisements. While I was having a casual discussion with a friend she suggested that I should consider launching my own brand.” However, she says she was initially very sceptical and didn’t know if she was ready to take such a big step. “I am too particular about healthy foods and even prescribe my patients the traditional ways to lose weight without resorting to quick methods. I went and asked Appa if I can launch my own brand of organic products. He was very happy and said, “It is only an extension of your career, go ahead’. The only advice he gave was to do the R&D thoroughly before plunging into it. That way it was challenging.”
“I have been a green tea addict ever since I was in college. Nothing like a hot cup of green tea to take away exam stress! As a nutritionist I have always believed that green and white teas are loaded with health promoting and immunity building antioxidants. It is my way of giving back to the society,” Divya asserts. Explaining how she is bringing her idea of cost effective organic products into effect, she said, “The main advantage is that we own small farm lands in Coimbatore and Coonoor and I would say the latter is like my second home. I started growing tea and cultivate other products like Kuthiraival rice, brown rice, Kambu, Thinai and other siru thaniyangal. I myself supervise them regularly. The brand will be available at all supermarkets and cafes across India soon.” “Organic agriculture does not utilise toxic chemicals and thus eliminates health hazard to workers as well, “she signs off with a smile.