Rishabh Chokhani, the founder of Naturevibe Botanicals, has revolutionised India's organic and botanical food market. He started his botanical food brand in the U.S. by exporting high-quality produce from India. He expanded operations in India and some parts of the European market in 2017 and is now eyeing global export of organic produce worth ₹250 crore this year.
What are the factors behind the growth in demand for botanicals internationally?
The pandemic has started global conversations on at-home immunity building through natural products as a preventive measure against Covid-19. When there was limited research on the subject, age-old traditional ways of boosting immunity came to light. This highlighted the medicinal properties of plants, and the science of botanicals gained traction the world over.
How do you plan to make your operations robust amidst the growing demand?
Since the demand for organic food and botanicals has increased manifold in the last year, we are now multiplying our production and supplying the best quality organic food and botanical products in the U.S., France, Germany, Australia, and Singapore.
We have a strong network of more than 1,200 farmer partners who supply the best quality organic produce. In addition, with our manufacturing unit in Raigarh, Maharashtra, we employ the rural population and give them hands-on training to help us manufacture the best quality products.
Looking back at your journey, what is that one learning that stood out for you?
Having started Naturevibe Botanicals after being inspired by my transformation, I believe that fitness is not a short-term phenomenon, rather a lifestyle choice. This is the reason I want to help people realise their health goals sustainably. I also imply this principle in business. There are no shortcuts and no substitute for consistency.
What are some of the challenges that you faced?
Being a bootstrapped startup, I faced a few challenges while starting operations. A weak supply chain and a constant fear in the farmers' minds of yielding less organic produce due to primitive agricultural processes for preventing pest attacks were some of the main challenges. It took us quite some time to tackle these issues.
Can you tell us more about your offerings?
We are a Mumbai-based startup selling health products like superfoods (wheatgrass and chia seeds), organic food, ayurvedic supplements, staples, groceries, essential oils, massage oils, etc. We have partnered with multiple e-commerce platforms to sell their products in India, the U.S., and Europe.