Krishna Shastry starts Bangalore’s first Vegan Restaurant: Carrots
Let’s get started by throwing up a stat. Vegetarians in India, although making up about 30% of the population, are primarily, as far as their diet goes, lacto-vegetarians. Vegans (those who completely abstain from the use of any animal products, either in diet, clothing or anywhere else) in India though, comparatively are few and far between but the trend is growing. Health conscious Indians are turning vegans and it is expected that more will follow.To cater to this need, Carrots has started up in Bangalore. Located in the heart of Bangalore’s foody world in Koramangala, Carrots, with the distinction of being Bangalore’s first Vegan restaurant, is trying its bit to build a better tomorrow for the society as a whole.
Underlining the importance of eco-sustainability and a vegan lifestyle in today’s times, Krishna Shastry, the founder says, “To say that sustainable living is the need of the hour would be an understatement. Although, I wouldn't want to sound pessimistic, if you ask me frankly, I don't see the green route being taken up by people in big way at all. Certain scientific advancements have pampered us so much that we refuse to come out of comfort zones and accept nature's way”.
How it began
After a brief corporate stint, an encounter with a German who had started a similar vegan venture, and with some support, Krishna decided to take the plunge. “When we were nearing the launch, a couple of gentlemen did come forward with limited financial & big moral support. They were complete strangers and their act was a pleasant surprise, which in a way kind of reinforced my belief in doing good things”, he adds. Started off about 6 months ago recently, Carrots has been getting rave reviews for quite an innovative and interesting menu.
Due to its fledgling state, Carrots is run by a small, full time and dedicated staff. “Also, at the moment, we have hired a few people on a part time basis. They all come from highly educated backgrounds, and they are working here mainly out of passion and respect towards the concept that we have envisioned. For them, this is an ethical job”, adds Krishna
They haven’t spent anything on marketing yet and they’ve been generating the buzz via word of mouth alone.
The road ahead
The founder believes that with the right kind of talent working on the ideas of ethical consumption and with sufficient funding, his venture could easily become a big thing. “Our short term goal is to continue innovate and offer more and more exciting health food to our customers. Like at the moment, we are in the process of coming up with a set of amazing and healthy pizzas, pastas, burgers and sandwiches. We are also definitely open to the idea of expansion. Opening health food counters in IT parks, malls etc. are definite possibilities.”
“What we offer is definitely need of the hour from various perspectives, and I hope more people realize it and come forward. If anyone wishes to join us in this journey, they are most welcome to discuss with us in detail.”
Signing off, he also adds, “Though Carrots is a private and technically a for-profit venture, I see this as a social entrepreneurship. Here we honestly try and do our bit to construct a better future for everyone - like caring for customers' health, treating employees respectfully, trying to abide by all the laws, paying taxes honestly, maintaining transparency and so on. So, I hope everyone around recognizes the value of such a venture and supports in whatever way possible. In return we promise to continue working hard and giving you our best.”