In a bid to bring back the traditional vegetable jackfruit to Indian kitchens, Aman Chhabra, the founder of Kathalfy, has launched a range of ready-to-eat jackfruit products. With its health benefits and the aim to reduce food waste, Chhabra's startup is making jackfruit easily accessible and enticing for urban residents.
Rediscovering Jackfruit's Potential:
Growing up in Ramgarh, Jharkhand, Aman Chhabra fondly remembers the delicious jackfruit dishes his mother used to prepare. However, after moving to Mumbai, he noticed the absence of jackfruit in households and restaurant menus. The time-consuming task of cleaning and cooking jackfruit and the rise of lab-grown food products led to its decline in popularity. Determined to reintroduce jackfruit in a convenient and contemporary way, Chhabra founded Kathalfy.
Kathalfy offers a diverse range of 13 ready-to-eat and ready-to-cook jackfruit items. From jackfruit makhani to jackfruit tikka masala, jackfruit Malabar curry to jackfruit Lucknowi keema, the startup aims to cater to various culinary preferences. Additionally, Kathalfy provides jackfruit-based products like seed flour, pickles, pancake mix, vacuum-fried chips, and even chocolates. By creating these innovative products, Chhabra aims to make jackfruit a staple in Indian diets once again.
Aman Chhabra's Journey:
After completing his graduation from Shri Ram College of Commerce, Delhi University, Aman Chhabra ventured into the events and entertainment industry. However, the COVID-19 pandemic forced him to reevaluate his career choices. Combining his passion for food and a desire to contribute positively, Chhabra delved into the food processing industry. He recognized the untapped potential of jackfruit and the wastage it faced annually in India.
Addressing Health and Environmental Concerns:
While lab-grown protein-based foods gained popularity, Aman Chhabra focused on the nutrient-rich jackfruit that was being wasted. With an estimated worth of Rs 2,000 crore going to waste each year, Chhabra aimed to create a better value proposition for this versatile fruit. As people became more health-conscious during the pandemic, plant-based diets gained traction. Jackfruit, with its numerous health benefits, became an ideal choice for Chhabra's venture.
Kathalfy's journey was not without obstacles. Developing a wide range of unique food items posed a challenge during the initial years. Aman Chhabra collaborated with jackfruit farmers, food scientists, and institutions to create distinctive recipes. However, finding satisfactory assistance proved difficult. Undeterred, Chhabra took matters into his own hands, experimenting with different recipes and gathering feedback from friends and neighbors. After multiple trials and positive responses, he enlisted the help of a professional chef to refine the recipes.
Promoting Jackfruit's Social Status:
Aman Chhabra's mission has always been to uplift the social status of jackfruit. Unlike other brands that position it as a meat replacement product, Chhabra promotes jackfruit for its unique qualities. The brand name, Kathalfy, reflects this philosophy – a combination of "Kathal" (jackfruit) and "Simplify." By focusing on taste, retaining nutrients, and avoiding artificial chemicals, Chhabra aims to create products that he and his family would consume.
Growing Popularity and Future Prospects:
Kathalfy has witnessed a steady increase in its customer base, with at least 600 orders received every month from different parts of India. States like Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Punjab, and the Delhi-NCR region have shown keen interest in Kathalfy's jackfruit products. Aman Chhabra is optimistic about the future and believes there is still a long way to go in terms of reintroducing jackfruit into Indian kitchens.
With his startup Kathalfy, Aman Chhabra is on a mission to revive the popularity of jackfruit in Indian households. By offering a wide range of ready-to-eat and ready-to-cook jackfruit products, Chhabra aims to make this nutritious vegetable easily accessible and appealing to urban residents. Through his innovative approach and dedication to promoting jackfruit's social status, Chhabra hopes to create a positive impact on Indian diets and reduce food waste significantly.