By Reena Pillai
Under United Way Bengaluru’s women empowerment program, which is supported by 3M and implemented by Green Foundation, a papad making unit was inaugurated at Chikkamokudlu Village near Kanakpura. Under the program, 15 beneficiaries were provided with the requisite machinery required to make papad on a large scale.
This includes papad making moulds, grinder -mixer and a dryer with a capacity to dry 10 kg papads a day. This unit is able to produce 3500 papads per day. Five kinds of papad such as rice, ragi, tomato, wheat, urad dal and multigrain will be made. It will be sold under the brand name Parvathi papads. Efforts are being made to market the product at various exhibitions, trade fairs and outlets such as Jaanadanya.
On the occasion, a training session was organized for the women and Kavitha from 3M spoke on safe packaging of food products. She stressed on the importance of hygiene at every stage of papad making and highlighted important points such as –
- Procuring best quality raw materials like ragi, rice, spices and ensuring that they are correctly washed and cleaned
- Taking a bath before stepping into production units, wearing clean clothes and washing hands at regular intervals
- Strictly adhering to cleanliness and hygiene of self by avoiding touching of nose, eyes ears, hair or any other body parts.
- Wearing the cap, gloves and mask throughout the papad making process.
- Taking the day off if anyone is suffering from any ailments like cold, cough, fever, allergies etc.
Please click the link here to view Kavitha speak https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GvvKzXWmZb4
Aparna Sardar, Global leadership coach from 3M stressed on the importance of choosing a leader from the group, “A leader must be appointed to ensure smooth functioning of all aspect of the work. It can also be on rotational basis where each member takes turn to lead the group.”
Says Shiv Kumar, representative of Green Foundation, “We are extremely glad to share that at recent exhibition, we were able to sell around 3000 papads over three days. This was a positive response and we are awaiting feedback from customers. We have yet to standardize the product and this exercise will take around three months to fructify.”
Ratnamma who is a homemaker and a beneficiary was excited with the opportunity to earn extra income through this initiative. She expressed that she was looking forward to the work becoming regularized and standardized which could be of immense help to her. This program will help her earn around Rs 1000 to Rs 1500 per month.
A video on the highly reputed and successful brand Lizzat papad was also shown to the beneficiaries to enable them to learn and understand from this sustainable livelihood model for women.
Representatives from 3M inaugurated the initiative by unveiling the plaque. Panchayat Development Officer Raghu cut the ribbon for the papad drying unit and representatives of 3M India, United Way Bengaluru and village counsel lit the lamp.