BENGALURU: It is nearly impossible to plan our spending on vegetables, with pricing volatile and arbitrary. We usually pay what is pencilled on paper placards, with little choice. Tribe Nation, an e-commerce company, has developed an app to help control our kitchen economy.
Backed by singer Lucky Ali (founder and brand ambassador) and Uma Mahesh (founder and MD), Tribe Nation aims to help farmers get a fair price and consumers get fresh produce at competitive rates, freeing both from the volatility in prices. It works on a subscription model: A consumer can pick vegetables and quantity they would require for a week and get it delivered to their address at a chosen time.
The founders claim that it eliminates five levels of middlemen. "You buy onions for about `80 from the market. Through this app, you can buy it for `12 to 14," says Uma. "You can save up to 50 per cent of your earnings," adds Lucky.
What led the two of them to start this company? "Our own losses in agriculture," says Lucky. Uma says farmers are quitting this line of work for jobs that earn better. "Who will do farming then? That's why I decided to quit a corporate job after about 17 years and get back to farming. I am a techno farmer. My father has a farm and I have also bought a few pieces of land."
The crops are cultivated as per the demand. "Demand is calculated through analytics. We tell farmers what to grow, say tomato on a quarter acre of land and the others on a half-acre land," says Lucky adding that this reduces the wastage as well.
Vegetables and fruits are sourced from farms in and around Bengaluru and also Himachal Pradesh. There are more than hundred farmers associated with the company. "The biggest benefit for them is that they can be assured of an income,” says Uma.
The company offers ‘farm fresh’ veggies, and not organic ones. "There is no such thing as organic. Say, farmer A cultivates without using any chemicals but farmer B uses fertilizers and pesticides, it could affect farmer A’s crops because there could have been cross pollination," says Lucky.
How it works
Through the Tribe Nation app, members can select their grocery items, time for delivery and then pay for it. The subscriptions are available to new members in Bengaluru for free. All members have access to unlimited number of deliveries, free on orders over `200. Same day delivery is available for orders placed before 12 noon, for orders placed post that, delivery is done next day.