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Why are Telugu NRIs so obsessed with the food they grew up with?

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Hyderabad: Vadiyalu, Papad, crunchy Sakinalu, Ariselu, Chegodeelu, Annamayya Laddu, Gongura Pachchadi, Murukulu, Atukula Mixture, Chicken Pickle, Palli Podi, Idli Karam Podi, childhood memories such as orange candy and others……and many more. These are our native dishes. We have grown up eating them. But, if you are living out of your motherland for some time, maybe in America or any other country, you miss them the most. And you crave what you miss the most. 

Is there a way out? Yes, thanks to the Internet, technology and desi food eCommerce platforms, and aggregators, even if you are away from your home country, you can still enjoy your favourite pickles, sweets, snacks, clothes, toys, handlooms, masalas and spices.

There are many Telugus and Indians settled abroad.   The NRI Indian and Telugu communities crave homely food, native art and culture. And thanks to these unique business verticals, their cravings are addressed and attended to. And kudos to these innovative business models, even after being so far away, they don’t any longer feel away from the food of their childhood.

Nearly three crore NRIs live, almost in all the 210 countries together, except for 5–North Korea, Tuvalu, Pakistan and Kiribati. Every year 25 lakh Indians migrate overseas, which is the highest annual number of migrants in the world. Indians comprise the world’s largest overseas diaspora. In the US alone, Telugus are estimated to be the third largest immigrant population among Indians. Katherine Hadda, American Consulate General in Hyderabad in the year 2017 said, one in every four Indians going to the USA is a Telugu person.

So there is a huge demand for desi food. And there is also a huge opportunity. And some players like Desi Authentic were quick to recognize this opportunity and have been addressing the need for the past couple of years. This has also triggered opportunities for many others in the local markets such as 01. housewife groups who make Pickles, Sweets and Snacks; 02. Local artists; 03. Weavers, who weave handloom sarees etc

Hyderabad-based Desi Authentic is a well-established player in this space catering to well over 38000 customers. It is an online eCommerce platform. It provides a huge variety of Indian Food that includes Cereals, Grains, Millets, Sweets, Namkeen, Pickles, authentic Spices, toys, books, arts, crafts, and handlooms. It also provides childhood memories–as peppermints, and candies that our friends living abroad crave. It went a step further, by providing Indoor games like Vamana Guntalu; Nirmal toys, made in Nirmal in Telangana which are considered to be ideal gifts and souvenirs. The toys of 400 years old Nirmal Art are widely popular with NRIs and are in great demand.

The Indian food comprises Vadiyalu, Papads, Podulu, Cereals, Grains, Pickles, Dehydrated powders and Niloufer biscuits.

There has been a demand for dehydrated curry leaf powder which has multiple benefits: helps in weight loss, treats indigestion, relieves morning sickness and nausea in pregnancy, is good for diabetics, good for eyesight is also provided.

Women fashion accessories, handloom sarees, dress materials etc are added subsequently along with Kitchen utensils, edible cutlery, kids products, learning material for kids, desi wellness products such as Zindatilismath, Herbal and Patanjali products

We have supported local arts and artists like Nirmal Toys, Kondappali Toys, and Etikopakka Toys and generated INR 2.8 core worth of business for local Kondapalli artisans, and home entrepreneurs in the last 3 years, shared Ram Vemireddy; Co-Founder and CEO from the USA, an NRI and three other Co-founders Mr Saurabh Ramdorai, Mr Ugandhar Sabbineni, Mr Vara Prasad Surikuchi.

We support women’s empowerment and support housewife groups by marketing Pickles, Sweets and Snacks which are made in their homes. Similarly, we promote handloom sarees directly from weavers to NRI customers in various parts of the world. And the children are not left behind. They are supported with desi and traditional teaching tools, games, equipment, books on mythology, great personalities, and spiritual and modern shared Ram Vemireddy, who with a vision to aid hand workers and crafters of rural India to market on a global platform, developed desi Authentic platform.

Many NRIs hold functions such as Grihapravesham, Sare (సారె) Wedding, and Anniversaries in the respective countries of their living. But food for their functions is cooked here in Hyderabad. Now it is a new trend. Whatever the functions are, NRIs have been outsourcing the desi food for their functions from Desi Authentic from Hyderabad. It has completed 3 years and wants to share trends in this space, its journey

Desi Authentic is a name to reckon for authentic Indian food. It has been taking desi food global, satiating the home food cravings of NRI Telugus for the past three years. It offers most missed dishes approximately 150 to Telugu NRIs in about 12 countries such as the USA, Canada, Australia, Newzealand, UAE etc and others. It has served over 38,000 NRIs with over 10,000 kgs of food items every month for the past three years.

Nothing can beat like ghar ka khana. It is healthy and tasty. The khana cooked by the mother we had while growing up is what we miss the most. That is the only missing thing, says Lavanya, an NRI. 

The restaurant food is good. So also shaadika khana.  But, you can’t have much of that food because of excessive oil, and fats used. But, that is not the case with homemade food. adds Prasanna Nangunuri, a NRI living in Washington DC. He has been a regular patron of Desi Athentic food.

The restaurant food leaves us with acidity or a bloated tummy. The sole aim of the ingredient used in such food is to give you good taste and no one is bothered later what happens to you. I have been missing homemade Indian snacks and pickles. But thanks to Desti Authentic, I can cherish what I like the most, an NRI from Khammam, settled in the USA for the past 20 years. 

Kamal Kumar says we have the best spices in the world and that’s why the whole world buys them from us. The spices are essential ingredients of Indian food. There is no alternative to our food, which we miss here in Australia very much says Stella Mary. There is so much choice and variety in our food, she says.

Desi Authentic is a marketplace where Indian heritage from remote areas finds a platform to showcase its beauty and skilled but deprived workers find a place to sell their worthy creations without losing commission to middlemen, says Ram.

Ram aspires to take this Indian talent to every corner of the world and give these workers a global selling market to increase their profits and bring them the appreciation they truly deserve.

He aspires to create a world of equal opportunities where every individual has the means to thrive and blossom.

Nothing brings people together like food. Most of the celebrations in the USA have Desi Authentic food served. Many Indians throw their desi authentic food party for their foreign counterparts and friends. Further, the health-conscious NRIs especially during these pandemic times are going back to their roots and want healthy food from India. They now prefer desi food over unhealthy fast food. They are making their young children follow desi Indian food at least occasionally.

Desi Authentic set foot in India. Now, these products are also available to domestic consumers. It is door delivered. They are also venturing into Vegan Food very soon.

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