The premier edition of MILLETS INDIA, organized by NuernbergMesse India, will be held from 1st-3rd September at India Expo Mart, Greater Noida, Delhi NCR

In talks with Shubhangi Singh, Founder - Ancient Golden Mill (GOLDEN MILLETS)

Ancient Golden Mill is an innovative millet-based processor & manufacturer which provides about 60+ healthy alternatives which are gluten-free, 100% natural & made with no added preservatives. Their Farm to plate Business model provides a holistic solution to revive & regenerate millet farming through awareness, education, providing good quality seeds etc. They are closely working with 100+ FPOs which cater to 20,000 farmers & are adding more farmers in 5 northern states. Their approach is to achieve world Sustainable development goals (SDGs) by saving water, improving soil quality, reducing malnutrition & empowering people about food & nutrition. 

Q: What motivated you to step into the health food business?

A: These dates 5 years back, when suddenly I was helpless about my mother’s health. We got all tests done, and reports were normal but her health was degrading that's when I started learning from the basics of body, to food nutrition and farming. In this process, I stumbled upon "millets" & the magic they carry to eradicate lifestyle diseases occurred by the poor quality of wheat & allergens. My journey started first i bought these super grains in my house & then decided to do research about the demand, market & innovative products. within 1 year we were with farmers understanding these crops and trying to make products like pasta & noodles.

Q: What kind of research you did before jumping into this business and what findings made you sure it is the way to go?

A: As we understood grains & studies from our scientists in ICAR and IIMR I started taking training & meeting farmers from various districts of India. we stayed on farms & learned about various millets & their grains. Simultaneously we researched about market, products & company compliances. Once we had a Few products in hand with proven results we started our manufacturing in-house. Awareness about the International Year of Millets 2023 is definitely giving strength to our mission.

Q: Millets are a superfood which have made a comeback in recent years.

What innovation and strategy went into designing your line of millets-based products?

A: Today's modern lifestyle and food habits need innovative easy-to-cook products like pasta, noodles, ready-to-cook products etc. Our focus is to make millet-based products with traditional methods without adding any preservatives trying to keep the taste as equal to an authentic one.

Q: You have an exhaustive line of millets-based products. What are the growth patterns and market acceptance for these products?

A: People are ready for healthy alternatives, awareness triggers & helps people choose wisely. Post covid food & health are two topics people are focusing on more and trying to educate on ingredients, preservatives, methods & alternatives. A few years back many people did not even care about food allergies, but now gluten and nut allergies are such big life changers. Our products fit right into today's need & as we care about the quality of grains, and nutrition level and don't add any preservatives our products are easy to switch healthy alternatives with innovative forms like ready-to-cook premix, or super energy bites.

Q: Tell us about the opportunities and the challenges in the Indian health food market

A: Acceptance of the taste is our major concern. so millet if not stored properly or not cooked properly gives a different taste which becomes the biggest disagreement to make choice. People are so used to Maida products, the texture, taste, and colour all these sensory features play a big role. So we decided on educating through videos & content & tasters in events. The market is new but has a lot of scope.