Inspiring Stories
A collection of personal Interviews with celebrated leaders, entrepreneurs, corporate honchos or any success stories.


Areca Tea, An Inspiring Story of Nivedan Nempe From Mallenadu

Villages are becoming old age homes is a common complaint now. Youngsters getting educated and leaving villages for jobs in cities have been a phenomenon for quite some time. Continuing the family tradition of farming, or other traditional trades is getting rarer by the day. There are many reasons for this migration to cities. Farming is not lucrative. Erratic monsoons, crop failure, market price for crops being erratic are a few of the crop related reasons. Attraction of the city is another reason. Many youngsters get bored of the dull life in the villages, and hope to escape from the drudgery and hard physical work that a farming life has to offer.

With easier access to education nowadays, many people feel that only the white collar or blue collar jobs can do justice to the education they have had after much sacrifice and efforts. A question they ask is what need is there for a degree if they have to go back to their villages, and do the same work their fathers did.

But we can see that the situation is reversing for good. We hear stories of well paid corporate executives, software engineers, and city folks chucking their comfortable jobs and heading back to villages, and starting organic farming, animal friendly dairy, manufacturing eco friendly products, or starting self help groups to help the rural community. Sustainable farming using environmentally friendly practices are gaining more attention, which is a welcome trend. Finding alternate ways of doing the same thing, creating innovative products, are helping create the typical rags-to-riches stories, and generate income for the community.

Let us look at one such inspiring story:

Nivedan Nempe of Areca Tea

What do you say to people who say their company must be headquartered in the biggest cities of the world? Here is a company, with a patented product, which has its main office in a tiny village in central Karnataka.

Who is Nivedan Nempe? He is the creator of Areca Tea. Areca is a commercial crop grown in the Malenadu regions of Karnataka. Nivedan was born in the village of Mandagadde in Shivamogga district. He did his schooling there, and completed his B.Pharma at National College of Pharmacy, Shivamogga. He got an opportunity to do his post graduation at Swinburne University of Technology, Australia. He worked as a Business Development Consultant which took him to different countries. But his love for his land was so strong that he returned back to his roots, with an ambition to achieve something at his place of birth.

His main aim was to help the farming community of the region, by putting to use the agricultural products to different uses, other than their conventional uses. He started Mystic Aromatics, which manufactures recycled paper air fresheners. Arecanut being the staple produce of the region, he started thinking on creating alternate products out of it. This naturally attracted Nivedan, who started his research on it.

Areca farming is the source of livelihood of about five lakh families in Malenadu region. Nivedan thought of alternate products that can be created out of arecanut, other than the conventional use in paan and supaari. Having a pharmacy background gave him insights about the chemical properties of arecanut. His studies showed that it contains tannins and anti-oxidants. He did his own research, and after a few months of hard work, introduced a new member to the tea family, the areca tea, which was simply named Areca Tea. Areca Tea has been certified by leading laboratories to have a wide range of health benefits. Apart from antioxidants, it has been found to control cholesterol. It is beneficial for diabetic patients. No wonder his Areca Tea bags have an international market. He has been featured in national and international media. Areca Tea has been awarded the ‘Innovative Product of the Year’ for 2014-15. His offices are in cities across the world, and the best news about him is, the head office is in his village, Mandagadde. Well, a big lesson for people out there who say there is no life in villages. 

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Any facts, figures or references stated here are made by the author & don't reflect the endorsement of iU at all times unless otherwise drafted by official staff at iU. This article was first published here on 11th April 2020.
Kuldeep Shiruru
Kuldeep Shiruru is a contributing writer at Inspiration Unlimited eMagazine.

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