Forests are some of the most generous and biodiverse ecosystems on the planet, and humans have a long, rich, and complex relationship with the species that inhabit them. The interactions between humans and forest ecosystems range from recognition and supervision to large-scale exploitation and degradation. Sustainability has become an increasingly essential component for mankind, There are products now which maintain 100% purity of herbs right from nurturing, processing to packaging. Companies believe that absolute health and happiness cannot be achieved in isolation. In an exclusive conversation with Financial Express Online Rohit Goel, Co-founder, Forest Raga shared his journey from getting personal healing from nature’s cure which motivated him to venture into the dense forests of India to source the purest ancient herbs to now sharing them with the world. He talked about why they support sustainable forest-based farming methods that help to protect mother nature and also support the livelihood of the farmers and more. Excerpts:
Forest Raga is based on natural principles, practices and ingredients. Can you tell us about your personal connection with forest herbs?
The personal connection is “belief”. We believe that the best environment for any plant’s growth is forest. We believe in the raw. We believe that the gifts from nature can heal our mind, body and soul. Rather than western medicines that only work to suppress, we want to focus on healing. And our purpose is to heal both the lives of our consumers and the planet.
Our herbs are forest-grown, which means that there is minimal human intervention involved. From fertilizers to the cultivation process, all our resources and methods are natural. Basically, we place our belief in Mother Nature and let her do all the work. The process results in pure potent and extremely nutrient-rich herbs without any harm to the environment. Once these are collected, they are dried in Sun and shade, and then ground at very low temperatures to retain all the nutrients and essential oils.
A lot of competitor brands sell extracts and tinctures with a high dosage of certain compounds, opposite to what is advertised by the health industry. While their solutions may provide success in the short run but long-term usage of the same is not yet tested by the scientists. On the other hand, Ayurveda has documented the usage of herbs for more than 6000 years. It suggests to use all the herbs together, not to forget any particular compound. Which is why, we don’t neither extract nor add compound(s) separately from the herb. We believe in zero interference to the natural formulae and deliver only the pure to the customers.
What is something that you’ve learned from working in this industry that most people wouldn’t know?
Truth and real care are the biggest marketing tools that any brand can have. Work from the core of your heart and be truthful, and love shall be bestowed on you. Otherwise, you can keep promoting your brand or products but there will be less or no results.
What role does customer feedback play in this segment?
Customer Feedback is an integral part for any brand/product, irrespective of any segment. For Forest Raga, it is of utmost importance. After all, we envisage healing human health. The insights that we have received from our conversations with our consumers have helped us put better and clearer communication in place. We realized that our consumers put a lot of faith and hope in us when they purchase our products. And we are happy to be able to help them with any issues they face to live a healthy life.
Recently, a lot of our consumers asked us about the usage of Bowel Move. To that, we responded that while the capsules are extremely efficient, we need some changes in postures, water intake and food to avoid, etc to be able to get rid of constipation. We have been communicating this to every consumer over the calls, and now we have planned to add these tips in our packaging.
How difficult is it to convince people for a new brand when they are already comfortable with the other natural products?
It’s a difficult yet interesting task to convince people to try our forest grown herbs. We get a lot of questions from people asking us how we are different, how our herbs are better, if our products would help because they have lost trust due to some brands, if our products will make their life better? And we always tell them that Ayurveda is beyond popping pills and Forest Raga is beyond just forest grown herbs. We bring thousands of years of Ayurvedic expertise with each of our solutions and we don’t just care for people but the Earth too.
When you claim that these products play a vital role in boosting defence against diseases and offer a variety of health benefits including improved digestion, a robust immune system, beautiful skin and overall well-being, can you throw some light on it? Defining it from an industry point of view.
For us, there is no “Industrial point of view”. Our approach is not commercial but an individual one. We have taken up this as a mission, as a service to reduce suffering and conserve forests. Secondly, when it comes to “vital role”. We try to make sure that people understand that it is not about popping pills but to make efficient changes in their lifestyle that brings in long term changes.
How often do you travel and engage with local farmers? Does it help in getting purest forest herbs?
Our farmers are a part of our family. We interact with them on a regular basis and pay visits twice a month for herbs inspection, groundwork and better understanding of our natural herbs growth process.