For many of us, a doctor-advised bedrest illness often leads to boredom, until we realise that we need to take care of our health. But in the case of Angad Sehgal, a forced break put him on the path of entrepreneurship. “I was sitting in San Francisco with a broken ankle. I was addicted to junk food. The doctors advised me that a shift to healthier options would speed up my recovery. My perception of healthy food until then was that it was tasteless, but the snacks including seeds, nuts and vegetable chips I purchased from the Whole Foods Market changed my perspective. It marked the beginning of Evolve,” says the founder, whose Delhi-based start-up offers a wide range of lip-smacking healthy snacks.
Started in May 2017, Evolve makes ‘air-dried’ products that are categorised as snacks for weight loss, healthy desserts, energy drinks and Indian snacks. Take your pick based on mentioned health benefits and place your order on its web portal. Among the extensive list of offerings, are chips made of ragi, pudina, jackfruit and okra, masala foxnuts, fruit leather (sheets of dried fruit puree), salted and spicy seeds and dry fruits. One can choose from 50 gm to 1kg packs; meanwhile, its product pricing ranges from Rs.400/kg to Rs.1,500/kg.
For Sehgal, it was always about making healthy tastier. He is also trying to bust fitness myths around healthy food. “A lot of people believe that spices are not good for health, but that’s not true. We use spices in our products as they have various health properties and also work as preservatives,” he explains. The company claims that they don’t use any preservatives but follow nitrogen flushing method for packaging.
To avoid the cost of importing machinery from abroad, Sehgal designed them all himself which cost him around Rs.20 lakh, and set up the manufacturing facility in Delhi. Evolve avoids using the microwave for air-drying its products since the process comes with the risk of losing all nutritional content. Instead, the start-up uses vacuum drying technology, which takes upto 10-15 hours depending on the fruit or vegetable’s moisture content. So far, Evolve has catered to about 25,000 customers. In addition, it also has some corporate tie-ups with Airbnb and JW Mariott in Gurugram.
The company received Rs.90 lakh from 50K Ventures in seed funding. The start-up is planning to introduce more automation and is in talks with some VCs to raise $1-1.5 million for the same. By the end of next quarter, Evolve is hoping to enter the retail space in metro cities. So, now you can munch away guilt-free whenever you please.