As a single mom to a four year old who is an extremely finicky eater, finding kid friendly meals that are delicious as well as healthy is quite honestly, a bit of a nightmare. I’ve often looked up recipes and stalked blogger mamas to find something that would be the ideal food ticket to a full and happy kiddo. I’ve unfortunately had only about a 40% success rate with the recipes I looked up.
It was during one of my recipe stalking escapades that I came across Slurrp Farm. I read up on the brand and instantly fell in love with the concept! This blog, all about this amazing brand is dedicated to all you amazing mamas out there!
*based on an interview done in written format
Launched in October 2016, SLURRP FARM was thought up by two enterprising mamas, MEGHANA NARAYAN and SHAURAVI MALIK who wanted to bring a positive change to children’s eating habits. Their mission? To provide healthy snack and meal time options for young children.
The women behind the brand
Before venturing into entrepreneurship, Meghana led the Public Health practice at Mc Kinsey, India. Having specialized primarily on maternal and child health, Meghana has served many International agencies and foundations working primarily in Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and North Eastern States. A proper ragi fed Bangalore kid, Meghana was a competitive swimmer with over 400 national medals and has even represented India at the Asian Games in 1998. An engineer by training, she is a Rhodes Scholar at Oxford University and an MBA from Harvard Business School
Shauravi, an economist by training from St.Stephen’s college New Delhi also has a masters in Economics from Cambridge University. She used to work in the Consumer, Healthcare and Retail M&A Advisory Team and the Leveraged Finance Team at JP Morgan in London. She has conceived and commissioned a White paper on Millets at Slurrp Farm to ignite a dialogue on the importance of millets and traditional Indian superfoods.
Meghana and Shauravi share that they don’t come from traditional business families and have learnt a lot on the go. “Both our roles are really co chaser 1 and co-chaser 2 , and this is what we spend the majority of our time doing; we are both very persistent. Where Slurrp Farm is concerned, we have really learnt by visiting umpteen number of organic food farmers and companies, raw materials co operatives and vendors, food technologists, scientists, everyday farmers, machinery and equipment manufacturers, small and large food companies, packaging vendors, food retailers, nutritionists, food labs and others.”
This journey that criss crossed so many parts of India- villages, towns and large cities and of course the food industry are what they truly believe shaped their vision for Slurrp Farm.
Tastes and food concepts from one’s own kitchen
One of the first cereal prototypes that was tried came straight from Meghana’s Grandmother. Both women have a strong Bangalore connect and have grown up eating ragi in various forms and today millets are an integral part of Slurrp Farm’s portfolio. The pancakes and dosas are based on traditional recipes passed on from their grandmothers.
The idea took root while they were working in London. Every time an India visit was planned, they would get requests from friends to bring back certain food products for children. Surprised by the request, they did some research and discovered that some of the organic products abroad sourced ingredients from India! They couldn’t understand why there weren’t more suitable products for children in India especially with the plethora of local ingredients especially millets. This thought was further reinforced after they moved back to India and became moms.
“The fundamental notion that drives us is that we need to eat like our grandparents did. The food options that we make available on a shelf are the same as what we make at home. As consumers, what we lack in time should not be compromised on food ingredient quality. There have been tremendous improvements in packaging, which we will use (and have used) to support us in our endeavour.”
Keeping the target audience in mind, the right proportion has been worked out in consultation with Industry specialists, nutritionists and paediatricians.
“We have been extremely conscientious about getting the nutritional component right. Once children get used to eating well from the start, they carry that forward on their own. We have been able to start with a clean slate. No trans fat, ie, no dalda or edible vegetable oils or hydrogenated fats, no glucose, inverted syrup or golden syrup, no high fructose corn syrup and little to no maida.
Along with ensuring a high nutritional value, we have also focused intensively on the taste aspect of our products as well. We truly believe that health, taste and attractiveness can all work hand in hand!”
Facing and owning challenges
“Our biggest challenge has actually been time and testing patience! The sheer difficulty of making something you would work in your own kitchen work from a commercial and process perspective on a large scale. It’s all about learning new things, stepping into a new domain and working our way up. It’s almost like having ten different jobs at the same time. First we had to learn about translating products from our kitchens to a manufacturing point of view. Once the products were set, we had to move onto learning retail, marketing, social media, etc. The learning never stops!”
Growth and presence
“Within our first year and a half, we reached out to about 80,000 customers on Amazon, BabyChakra and FirstCry, and we are also available on Air Asia and major hotel chains like the Hyatt, Taj Hotels. We are now in approximately 200 stores across Delhi NCR and are expanding our retail presence in various other cities including Cochin, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Chennai and Mumbai amongst others. And in good news for Cochin mums, we will soon be available at Lulu!”
The range of Slurrpy delights
At present Slurrp Farm offers a range of nutritious cereals made with organic whole grains for toddlers and zero trans fat cookies, millet dosas and pancakes for children and children at heart. The products contain no added artificial colours, flavours or preservatives.
“Our intention is to revive traditional superfoods, especially the vast variety of millets available in india. We intend to drive an inflexion and a real change in the Indian food retail sector. We have several exciting new product launches in the pipeline.”
An up close and personal look at the products:
- Cereals: (Once your child starts consuming solids- 6 months- 2.5 years)
- Whole wheat, Moong, Rice, Spinach and Tomato with Milk:
Mildly roasted and well ground organic green moong, organic rice and organic wholewheat coupled with real dried spinach and tomato
- Whole wheat, Ragi, Oat, Banana and Apple with Milk
Mildly roasted and well ground organic ragi, organic oat and organic wholewheat coupled with organic brown sugar and powdered real dried banana and apple flakes
- Whole wheat, Maize, Rice, Banana and Mango with Milk
Mildly roasted and well ground organic whole wheat, organic maize and organic rice mixed with organic brown sugar and freeze dried yummy real mango and banana flakes
Slurrp Farm cereals are made with organic ingredients and contains real fruit. They do not use preservatives , colourings or artificial flavours and are not loaded with excessive sugars- Organic brown sugar is used instead. The product contains no salt and is based on traditional recipes using superfoods such as millets, wholegrains and lentils. These super convenient meals are travel friendly and cook in two minutes. The recipes developed in consultation with food technicians, nutritionists and paediatricians contain essential minerals and vitamins that are vital to a child’s growth and development. Each pack containing approximately 10 meals is packaged in three layers, metalized and totally air sealed to ensure zero anaerobic activity.
- Slurrp Farm cookies (from 7 months onwards and for everyone!)
- Whole wheat, ragi and chocolate: Gently roasted ragi and whole wheat flour paired with butter, cocoa and the tiniest hint of cinnamon.
- Oats, honey and banana: Crunchy oats and whole wheat flour combine with banana, hints of golden honey, butter and bits of raisins (Age 1 year and above)
These gorgeous cookies are 18 to a pack with cute Indian animal shapes (Rhino, Croc, Monkey and Parrot). Made using only the best natural ingredients, whole grains, real butter and natural sweeteners such as honey and raisins, these cookies have zero transfat and no artificial colours of flavours.
- Slurrp Farm Dosa mixes (7 months onwards and for everyone!)
- Millet Dosa Mix: Supergrains and Beetroot
Pretty beetroot pink dosas packed with natural ingredients; Ragi, urad daal, red rice, oats, suji, natural beetroot powder and a mix of mild spices. Ragi has 10 times the calcium of wheat and rice! It’s great for bone growth and a wonderful alternative for lactose intolerant people.
- Millet Dosa Mix: Supergrains and Spinach
Green means go! With these delicious green spinach dosas made with foxtail millet and four daals- Urad, Moong, Toor and Chana, natural spinach powder and a mix of mild spices. This dosa packs a serious protein punch of 17 gms per 10 gms
- Slurrp Farm Pancake mixes (7 months onwards and for everyone!)
- Millet Pancake Mix: Banana Choco Chip and Supergrains
Slurrp Farm pancaked are a powerhouse of protein, calcium and fibre! Filled with the goodness of supergrains- Foxtail millet, amaranth, oats and jowar mixed in with some yummy chocolate chips and natural banana powder.
- Millet Pancake Mix: Chocolate and Supergrains
The goodness of wholegrains mixed in with cocoa for a delicious meal!
Research. Research. Research.
Bringing out a food brand requires extensive market research, constant interaction with the consumer and first hand requirement intel from Indian mothers and families. In spite of the brand being founded by two moms, it was infact shaped by many. Time is of the essence nowadays and quicker the meal can be made, the more the favouritism. A rise in the level of health consciousness, changing lifestyles, mounting disposable spending and a growing availability of healthy food products in shopping malls and retail outlets have led to a startling global growth in the health food segment.
This led Meghana and Shauravi to focus on healthy and conveniently packed food products which are easy to prepare and use on the go. One of their key segments includes young parents across the country who require easy and quick food options with no compromise on health and taste. Being product based in india, Slurrp Farm also advocates home made and natural food fixes that can be easily adopted to modern India.
“One of the first cereal prototypes we tried came straight from Meghana’s grandmother and the recipes have been worked on to ensure nutrition, taste and a bit of fun. Addressing the post weaning stage with these products, Slurrp Farm has been meticulous about getting the nutritional component right.”
The Slurrp Farm cookies were worked on by Mandakini Gupta, owner and chef of Delhi based Smitten Bakery. Interestingly, after Mandakini narrowed down the recipes to seven flavours, letters were written to 200 parents in a playschool asking permission for their children to try the cookies, after all they were the final little consumers. The children were very honest about their likes and the best loved are the ones that are featured on their website today.
“The dosa recipe is a brainchild that resulted from the marriage between a book by Chef Ottolenghi who has a lovely recipe for green pancakes and my late grandmother who was always inventing dishes in the kitchen. All the recipes come from conversations in our own homes. Apart from health, we also want to create something that is fun for children! Pink dosa because beetroot makes everything so lovely and chocolate because who doesn’t love it?” Adds Shauravi
The inspiration behind the brand
Slurrp Farm is passionate about healthy eating and wishes to provide parents the convenience needs in terms of food options that equal home cooked food. “What drove us is our feel regarding serious problems in the food chain today. The statistics are shocking! 9 out of 10 indians are protein deficient and India has the second highest rate of obesity amongst children in the world! The contamination at every level has frightening repercussions on social health outcomes. We fundamentally believe that we need to change our eating habits as a society.” Says Meghana
Do more with Slurrp Farm
Slurrp Farm products are extremely recipe friendly and can be extended to more than pancakes and cereal.
“Slurrp Farm cereals can be made into pancakes. Eggs can be added to the fruit cereal or yoghurt to the savoury ones to increase protein intake. You can add it to your regular atta and make multigrain rotis. A delicious drink can be made using the ragi, apple and banana cereal. Add in some warm milk, cocoa and honey to make it extra special.
With the dosa mixes, one can make yum millet paniyarams. Prepare the batter as per instructions on the pack, add chillies and onions to the batter and finally pour the batter onto a heated paniyaram pan and cook well on both sides. Best served with delicious chutneys.”
Slurrp Farm has a number of tried, tested and faithful consumers. In fact one parent wrote in stating that she is a Slurrp Farm lifer! Her daughter has started out with baby cereals and cookies and now loves the pancakes and dosas! Many parents claim to love Slurrp Farm products as much as their children! To check out all the love Slurrp Farm has received visit their accounts and hash tag:
Slurrp Farm and what the future holds in store
Slurrp Farm as a company has a vision to build India’s most loved children’s food brand.
“In the next 10 years we hope to drive an inflexion or a real change in the healthy food market. On our journey, we want people who are in for the long term to accompany us. We dream of being available on every retail shelf and in millions of kitchens, homes and hearts. When a customer holds a Slurrp Farm product in their hands, we want them to feel tremendous pride for being part of a company that is Indian Made and made for Indians. To incorporate Indian food traditions into the recipes, use the best possible ingredients, create a global identity and still have it priced at an Indian price point has been hard work but we feel we have achieved a small measure of it and we want to keep improving. As we scale, we know we will manage a greater price efficiency and we look forward to reaching that goal!”