City Gets its Second Organic Mall
By Express News Service | Published: 18th February 2014 09:12 AM |
Jaivik Mall, an organic store where you can buy pesticide and chemical free vegetables, grains, pulses and even body cosmetics, has become the latest attraction in Sanjaynagar.
Inaugurated on Thursday, this is the second Jaivik Mall to be opened in the city, the first one being in Lalbagh.
Ramkrishnappa, additional director, Horticulture Department and honorary president of the Jaivik Society said that vegetables and other items from samples provided by farmers are tested for pesticide residues at a Bio centre in Hullimavu. More than 100 farmers throughout the state provide vegetables and grains to the mall, although during summer, this number can come down to 35. “Initially, we thought of getting vegetables directly from farmers, but it was too difficult to monitor. At present, the products are supplied by various farmer associations,” he said.
With more farmers joining the society, the department plans to increase the number of days when vegetables are available at the mall. “Farmers do not harvest vegetables every day. Moreover, transporting vegetables fresh from the farm on a daily basis will also be a huge expenditure considering that these are easily perishable items,” he said.
Two more malls will also open in Nandini Layout and Banashankari during this month. In the meantime, plans are also afoot to set up an organic corner in selected HOPCOMS outlets in the city.
“I came here for chemical free food. Before this, we never really had an option but buy food that we knew could harm us in the long run. All we could do was try to wash off the chemicals or soak vegetables and fruits for at least 30 minutes in water, wash grains in hot water and take precautions like that. When it is organic food, you know it is healthy and you don’t have to worry so much,” said Lalita Prakash, a housewife.
Basudeb Datta, a scientist at IISc was also concerned about the pesticides that was going into his system. “While there are other organic malls coming up, Jaivik Mall, I believe is more affordable for mid-income groups,” he said.
But a problem is the fact that vegetables are sold out quickly and are available only few days a week. Fresh stock of vegetables come on Tuesdays and Fridays. From Basudeb’s experience, chances are they will run out the same day itself.
“I hope they do something to increase the number of days when the vegetables are available so that I can come at my convenience,” he said.