Don’t be surprised if all your techie friends are proudly flaunting new year resolutions that go on the lines of ‘Organic food only’, ‘Clean eating’ and ‘Organic cleanse’.
Everyone’s dream diet today, yes we are talking about organic food, is actually being buoyed by the initiative in city corporates to provide healthier food for its employees. The scene at office cafeterias in Hyderabad is currently undergoing a steady change. From deep fried bread pakodas and samosas to ragi laddus and lemon tea with organically-processed honey, the shift though small is noticeable.
If not for a complete shift in diet and lifestyle, at least the executives and techies are increasingly becoming conscious of what they consume and are opting for cleaner and greener alternatives as often as they can. Prabhakar Reddy, head of energy division in a leading corporate house, is one of them. “After organic food was introduced in our office cafeteria, I became more conscious about eating cleaner and greener. Yea, we don’t eat every meal organic but at least once or twice in a week, my friends and I make it a point to get lunch from the organic counter.
The change might be small but we believe it is definitely something that will have a positive effect on our health,” he says. Besides dishing out an organic spread for their employees, the human resource departments are also hosting awareness programmes. Nithya Nivali, HR Head for Hitec City-based IT company, Progress-Software, says, “We are right now working on a survey to understand what our employees want in terms of their diet and food. We are also welcoming suggestions and ideas from them. We also have sessions to raise awareness among them about organic food.”
As for the menu, the food is more millet-based and is made of completely organic ingredients. The changes are simple like jowar and ragi laddus are on offer instead of let’s say, besan or mothichur laddus in the dessert section. Organic food is more expensive than other food available in the market. But the corporates don’t mind shelling out a few extra bucks for the sake of better health of their employees. The companies tie up with vendors to offer organic food at discounted rates so that the habit of eating healthy also goes home with them. Vishal Fernandes, who works in Cyberabad and who also incidentally happens to be a food blogger, calls these initiatives a boon.
The senior executive says, “Our office had organised organic-food only stalls on the office premises. I was quite taken in and bought organically-processed millets and honey to take back home!” N Balasubramanian, who provides supplies to most corporates, confirms, “A major shift has happened in last two years where corporates have started using organic products. We have been supplying daily grocery products such as rice, atta, dal, spices and other natural products like juices, breakfast cereal and honey regularly to corporates in Hyderabad. Just when people think that the hue and cry about organic might just be a fad, you know that the awareness is all around.
And it is catch on so fast that the shift is going to continue on, with software professionals like Vikram, who works in Gachibowli asserting: “My friends who work in Cyberabad talk about organic food all the time. I am hoping to get my company’s attentions towards this so that we can eat healthy too!”
What exactly is organic food?
Vegetables, fruits, pulses and even livestock grown and bred without any chemicals such as pesticides, synthetic fertilisers or any mechanised chemical-based methods. As far as animal produce like meat or eggs are concerned, they have to be reared without antibiotics or hormones for them to be certified as organic.