A family-run ‘factory’ that churns food, tradition and entertainment 

Arumugam cooks with huge utensils and a large number of groceries to produce enormous quantities of food.
VFF has 2.9 million subscribers. (Youtube Screengrab)
VFF has 2.9 million subscribers. (Youtube Screengrab)

CHENNAI: We recently stumbled upon a YouTube video of an elderly man cooking enormous amounts of food using giant utensils, and a video of an elderly woman using tiny utensils to cook small portions of food — what these have in common is the fact that the same family runs both YouTube channels.
Village Food Factory (VFF) and Tiny Food Factory (TFF) are part of the Factory YouTube channels, run by Tirupur-based brothers A Gopinath and A Manikandan, featuring their 65-year-old father, Arumugam, and 46-year-old mother, Selvi, cooking food. Gopinath began the series of channels in 2014, with the intention to provide entertainment in the Tamil language. Ever since he was in class 10, the 28-year-old was fascinated with films, cinematography, and editing, and his passion has stayed strong till date.

Arumugam cooks with huge utensils and a large number of groceries to produce enormous quantities of food. This food is later distributed to the poor and homeless in the area. “I wanted to produce content that people can enjoy and relate to. If you think about it, everyone eats three times a day. That’s where I got the idea of starting a cooking channel. When people see the number of utensils or groceries we use, then they are compelled to click on the video,” says Gopinath.  

The videos are also filmed in Theni, Ooty and Tirupur
The videos are also filmed in Theni, Ooty and Tirupur

However, things were tough for the family in the beginning. “Our parents didn’t think we could earn by making videos. My brother worked hard to convince my father — he worked as a painter. Once the money started coming in, he quit his job to work with us full-time,” shares Manikandan.Now, along with his sister, uncle, and sister-in-law, they run the YouTube channels and earn enough to support their family.  The videos are also filmed in Theni, Ooty and Tirupur.

At the end of 2017, Manikandan decided to start Tiny Food Factory. His mother, Selvi, cooks dishes with mini utensils to make small amounts of food, in direct contrast to what his father does. “This also has an appeal. A lot of children these days watch cooking videos while they eat, and I want them to see how all these dishes are made — the effort, love and tradition,” says Manikandan.

Gopinath explains that maintaining their audiences’ attention is crucial towards keeping their channel successful. “If we say that we will upload twice a week, we make sure we do so because if we don’t, they will start following other channels. Now, after the success of our channel, many channels with similar models have come up,” he says.

The brothers are not worried about the future, as they know that they will be able to provide high-quality content.  “Although this is a unique job, we do have sangams for our job security.  We are happy that we are doing what we love,” says Manikandan.

Related Stories

No stories found.

X
The New Indian Express
www.newindianexpress.com