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Talking to The Northeast Today

Recently we had a chat with The Northeast Today about food, good food, and food making. Here is how it went.

TNT: What are the things people should know before starting a food business?

K: As with all other businesses, you should have a clear idea of what segment of the market you want to cater to. It should also resonate with your strengths – be it your skillset, your network, or access to resources. And most importantly it should be something you are passionate about!

TNT: What are the ingredients required in making natural food products?

K: Interestingly, natural food products are less about what you put in and more about what you leave out. Avoiding artificial additives from food products presents some challenges, like reduced shelf-life, inconsistent appearance and texture, etc.. These challenges can be tackled by being innovative with processes, distribution and marketing. Not surprisingly, many answers can be found in traditional foods and practices of the past when all food were natural. We are also a very young enterprise and continually facing these challenges as an opportunity to be creative!

TNT: What are the health benefits of having local and natural food?

K: With big food companies competing for every corner of the global market on a war footing; their priority is more often than not placed on reducing costs, shelf-life, and instant appeal. The healthfulness of a food product takes a distant back seat. Consuming local and natural food reduces your exposure to carcinogenic additives, refined sugar, and other toxic substances. I would like to stress here that local doesn’t necessarily mean natural. Consumers should always read the ingredients carefully and choose wisely. If consumers start expressing preference for natural products, I believe our local food brands will gear up to provide it more readily.

TNT: What are the benefits of Kombucha?

K: Kombucha is a delicious probiotic beverage made by fermenting brewed red tea. It is a good source of Vitamin C and other antioxidants. It restores gut flora and improves digestive health. It boosts immunity and helps detox your body. And believe me, it just makes you feel good!

TNT: What are the steps involved and how long does it take to make Kombucha?

K: Kombucha starts with a sweetened red tea brew. It is cooled and a kombucha culture is added to it. It is left in a glass or fermentation grade steel container with a tight canvas cover to allow air but keep out flies. Left in an ideal temperature of 24 to 30 degrees celsius, it takes around 10 days to ferment. It can be further infused with fruits and spices for another 1 to 3 days. Our favourite infusion is ginger. Or maybe sumac berries. Hard to decide!

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The Virus and the Club

Thoughts and stories behind Forager’s kombucha Club

It’s been long. I am writing for the first time since a viral infection and the global effort to contain it changed life as we knew it drastically. There has been a range of vantage points for looking at this phenomena; ranging from paranoia, to congratulating the environment, to concern of lapses in government efforts, to calling the global response an opportunist over-reaction, and even to protesting against the whole thing calling it a hoax!

Nonetheless, this emergency got us thinking. Many are concerned about the fragility of our life(style) and how drastically a virus or government decrees can alter our lived reality. It also got people thinking a lot about wellbeing and immunity, how we can strengthen our body and its natural immunity to better guard us from present and new infections. Many became more conscious of the food we eat and strive towards a healthier lifestyle. The lockdown days were spent livening up unused spaces around the house with kitchen gardens. In this, one can see concern for both food integrity and food security. Lockdown has been a serious threat to the livelihood of an already struggling population.

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Our farmhouse nano-brewery tour

Our farmhouse nano-brewery is operational now. We’ve just put in our papers for the license after days of preparing the documents etc.. So you’ll soon see a new address and new license on our bottles. Don’t worry, it’s still us!

We took some pictures the other day and thought we’d share it with you so you can have a peek at our workshop. This is a typical bottling day at Forage Realfood. BTW we bottle twice every week. That way, we are working with small batches which ensures more consistency in maturity every time you open a bottle. Continue reading Our farmhouse nano-brewery tour

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Our kombucha story

Our kombucha first started brewing in our home kitchen around five years back. Then it moved to a rack at a balcony, to a corner of our restaurant; and now, to a new zip code to Matai. Kundo had stumbled upon this interesting fermented beverage on the internet and started reading on it. We got excited and ordered a SCOBY (this is what the kombucha mother is called) all the way from US of A through Ebay (remember that thing?!). It was not available at all in India back then. We started brewing 2 litre batches for our own consumption. We had just read about it back then and had no idea how it would taste. And when our first batch was ready, we had our first taste. It tasted great! And made us feel great too. We had given up drinking soft drinks for some time and I desperately needed something to fill the gap. This was it!

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A chat with Roots and Leisure

Some time back we had a chat with the online publication, Roots and Leisure. We talked about how it all started, what drives us, etc..

How has your roots and upbringing inspired you?
Roots is what we came back to set up a home and an enterprise. And more often than not, our roots are where we turn to for healthy food.  Also, ginger in our beverages, fish mint root with chili are everyone’s favorite!

Read the full interview here.

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Kekru Sessions 03

16 September ’17 | 4:30pm to 6:00pm | Entry Free

A happening organised by Kekru. Featured poets, open mic, acoustic music with Tejas Yambem. It is actually a Happening above Forage. The rooftop of our building is a real cosy place with a great view, esp. at sunset. So we thought we’d bring it to life! We hope to host more such dos in the future now that we know how great the vibe is! All thanks to KokSamLai building for letting us use the space.

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Shaping Sound


16 August ’17 | 6:30pm to 7:30pm | Entry Free

An invitation to transform difference through music and dance. For our impromptu Happening at Forage, we bring you Nawa Lanzilotti from Hawaii on Cello; contemporary dance by Joshua Sailo & Puia Pachuau from Mizoram.

Keywords: contemporary dance, Mizoram, movement, performance, Hawaii, live cello, improvisation

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The Koi + Atingkok + Eyoom

1 March ’17 | 4:00pm to 7:00pm | Ticket: Rs 300

For our next Happening at Forage we bring you The Koi, Atingkok and Eyoom!

Ticket Rs.300 (Limited seats. Just 80. Don’t curse yourself later, book fast!)
Available at: Forage, Thangmeiband; Books & Coffee, Singjamei; A2Z, Kwakeithel.

You can also book your ticket online here:

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Open House

14 January ’17 | 1:30pm to 5:30pm | Entry Free

This is our first event made possible with the help of our talented friends who went on to found the Kekru project later. It is an interactive open jam of various artforms. Noted poets Oja Yumlembam Ibomcha and Oja Robin S Ngangom will be joining us. We will be featuring solo artist Leishel Rangshel Koireng.

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