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Fast food now comes with a pinch of healthy


Gurgaon: The dilemma for Gurgaon’s swish set has often been about balancing their wild partying — inevitably followed by late night pig outs ? at junk food eateries — with the guilt that follows the morning after, when they put on their spandex to hit the gym.

Fitness crazy, fast food lovers, can the twain ever meet? Help is at hand, though, with Gurgaon’s first organic fast food chain opening earlier this week. A team of four friends launched YumBox to tap into this market. “We can’t stop people from eating fast food. so we thought of giving them a healthier version, by going organic,” said Captain Deepak Jain, one of the founders. YumBox doesn’t restrict itself to fast food though, offering “much in demand” salads as well.

According to industry experts, salads are the hottest category in the food space right now “Lately, even players like Fassos, who are not into health food, have introduced salads in their menu. It shows salads will never go out of fashion,” said Anand Agarwal, an investment banker who works with several health food investors. He added that while fast food is a weekend choice, salads are the lunch of choice for the corporate crowd.

Salad Days, one of the oldest food startups serving solely salads, rides this love among Indian customers. “We started in 2014. Since then, the salad trend has grown by leaps and bounds,” said Varun Madhan, cofounder. He said Salad Days has been recording double the growth every quarter. Salad Days takes its health fad seriously. Recently, they included cold-pressed juices in their menu.

Zoe. a health food outlet in DLF Phase 3, specialises in small packs of nutrients for health freaks on the run. It also functions on the same principle — there should be no dearth of healthy options. “No matter how healthy we eat, our meals lack micro-nutrients. Our juice recipes are packed with these,” said Taniya Dhansaria, founder, Zoe.

Against popular belief, Gurgaon is not compromising on health for taste. Residents have taken a liking to health food. According to Agarwal, the demographic of the health conscious customer is upper middle-class in the age group 25 to 40, 60% of whom are women.

“I want to be a fitness trainer some day, and keep hunting for healthy bites. I was delighted when I came across Zoe,” said Atul Kumar, head of administration at Nielson India Private Limited.

He added the best part of the health food space right now is the number of options available, and that players have started giving nutrient information on packs. “Every health conscious person wants to know what they are eating,” said Kumar.

Source: Times of India

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