Kodagu First

a Celebration. Positive News, Facts & Achievements about Kodagu, Coorgs and the People of Kodagu – here at Home and Overseas
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    We can only wonder why the rich love this


    Before you take a sip of Civet coffee, the world’s most expensive coffee, there are two things you should know: 1) A single kilo of it costs between ₹20,000 to ₹25,000; for those who don’t buy their own groceries – that’s approximately 25 times (2500% more) of what your everyday brew retails at, and 2) It is made from the droppings of the Civet cat.

    That’s right, droppings as in that smiley brown emoji you love sending your sibling.

    Though it is a common drink of the elite in both the richest parts of the Middle East and Europe, you won’t have to go too far to take a sip. Civet coffee is made right here in India, in Karnataka’s Coorg and Chamarajnagar districts. Its high price comes from the uncommon (to say the least) method that is involved in its production.

    There’s a reason why the most expensive coffee in the world derives it’s name from the civet cat, a largely nocturnal creature that resembles any child a raccoon and a cat may have some day. The end of the civet’s digestive process is the beginning of the coffee’s life cycle.

    When the civet eats the flesh of the coffee cherries, the natural enzymes in the animal’s stomach enhances the flavour of the eaten bean within those cherries. The bean is then found in the poop of the civet, processed and, after a routine check, packaged. The fact that it has been through the civet’s digest tract is what apparently makes it nutritious and its steep price tag attributed to the high cost that goes into sourcing the animal and quality certification.

    However, unlike other countries where civets are caged and fed forcefully, India uses a more natural method: the waste of wild civets is collected from coffee plantations that stand at the edge of the forests in Coorg and Chamarajnagar. That’s great news for farmers too because though we’re no coffee experts ourselves, we’re going to guess that locally sourced organic coffee bean-laden poop fetches a better price than the cage manufactured variety.

    source: http://www.gqindia.com / GQ / Home> Live Well> Drink / by Tracy Ann / September 20th, 2017

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    Coffee Board to finalise estimates after consulting stakeholders

    Coonoor :

    India is becoming a manufacturing hub for instant coffee after Brazil and Peru, said Y Raghuramulu, Director of Research, Coffee Board.

    In his presentation on coffee at the 124th UPASI annual conference here, he said the country is doing extremely well on the export front

    The total volume of export between April and August this year stood at 1.78-lakh tonnes, up from 1.63-lakh tonnes in the corresponding period the previous year.

    The country has moved from bulk exports to value-added coffee exports, he said. “We are consistently importing more for re-export. Imports are mainly for value-addition and re-exports by EOUs with duty free under FTP.”

    Import volumes during 2015-16 stood at 65,618 tonnes and the re-export volume at 67,283 tonnes. This surged to 78,042 tonnes and 79,254 tonnes the following year. Value-wise, the imports were estimated at ₹927 crore (₹802 crore) in 2016-17 and re-export at ₹ 1,346 crore against ₹1,147 crore in the previous year.

    Green coffee exports account for 70 per cent of the total export volume, with specialty green coffee exports inching its way from 3.20 per cent between April and August last year to 3.80 per cent during the corresponding months of this year. Value-added coffee exports have stagnated at around 25 per cent.

    Reverting to production, Raghuramulu said: “USDA has forecast India’s production at 3.3-lakh tonnes, but the Coffee Board is yet to release the estimate for 2017-18. The board is in consultation with various associations for finalising the estimates. We do not want to release as in earlier years and come out with a revision.”

    The board has undertaken a couple of fresh initiatives, such as the revamping of India Coffee House, brand ambassadors to promote Indian coffee and organising outreach programmes.

    “We are looking to franchise at least 10,000 vending machines in the medium-term. Our initiatives will indirectly benefit small coffee growers. We have also initiated discussions with small growers to form producer organisations to help them achieve better returns.”

    source: http://www.thehindubusinessline.com / Business Line / Home> AgriBusiness / by L N Revathy / September 13th, 2017

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    Dive Brief:

    Eight O’Clock Coffee has expanded its line of infused Arabica coffees with three new products designed to appeal to younger and more adventurous java fans, according to a news release.

    Joining its already established Relax Decaf and Alert Hi-Caffeine coffee blends is an offering blended with acai berries, another with turmeric and cinnamon, and a third featuring a fruit and herbal concoction rich in vitamin B6.

    Established in 1859 as the house blend for the Great Atlantic & Pacific Tea Company, Eight O’Clock Coffee is now a subsidiary of India-based Tata Global Beverages, which also owns Tetley tea in the U.K. and Good Earth Tea in the U.S.

    Dive Insight:

    Eight O’Clock Coffee is far from the first coffee brand to offer infused and functional blends. There have long been various flavor-infused coffees in the marketplace, and now there are wine-infused and THC-infused coffees for that extra buzz. VitaCup produces a line of vitamin-infused coffees sold in pods for one-time use with specialized machines.

    Tata Global Beverages has applied several marketing tools to reinvigorate its Eight O’Clock Coffee brand since acquiring it from Gryphon Investors in 2006. The former A&P grocery chain in-store coffee brand was sold to the private equity firm in 2003.

    Tata pulled out all the stops last year with a marketing campaign promoting whole bean coffee to consumers, and in 2012 joined with Green Mountain to launch Eight O’Clock K-cups for Keurig coffee machines. That move is credited with helping Eight O’Clock Coffee take a 7% share of the single-serve market within two years.

    The popularity of packaged coffee has been growing recently, primarily due to double-digit growth in the single-serve format. Ready-to-drink varieties are also becoming a popular choice and pose a challenge to the Eight O’ Clock brand as consumers increasingly prize convenience. It’s unclear if the health and flavor benefits of turmeric and cinnamon, or the trendy flavor of acai will win millennials over to taking the time to brew coffee.

    Tata clearly plans to continue efforts to better position Eight O’Clock Coffee within the very competitive packaged coffee marketplace, and these infused products are one more example. Whether they will resonate with younger coffee drinkers — who are typically more receptive to trendy formulations and packaging — is something Tata along with other companies will closely follow in the months ahead.

    source: http://www.fooddive.com / FoodDive / Home / by Cathy Siegner / September 19th, 2017

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    They may be the latest couple on the Sandalwood block, but have been known to maintain a low profile when it comes to their relationship. Which is why, it came as a huge surprise when the recently-engaged pair Rakshit Shetty and Rashmika Mandanna agreed to come on the celeb chat show — Super Talk Time.


    What’s more, the two even took a shot at domesticity — they were asked to make dosas by host Akul Balaji. The challenge? To make them heart shaped. While Rashmika managed to make a semblance of a heart, Rakshit’s according to Akul looked like a kidney. “Now every time dosas are made at my house, I’ll think of Rashmika,” said Rakshit.

    Did you know:
    In order to make it to the show. Rashmika had to juggle quite a bit with her schedule. She was shooting in Hyderabad the previous day, after which she shot for Anjaniputra until late night. In five hours after she wrapped up with Anjaniputra, she reported on the sets of the chat show. Having wrapped up the chat show, she left for another event out of town. Phew!

    source: http://www.timesofindia.indiatimes.com / The Times of India / News> TV> News> Kannada / by Madhu Daithota / TNN / September 18th, 2017

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    Take your love for cats to the next level by consuming their faeces. Yes, coffee made out of cat poop is now available in India.

    What happens when you take your love for cats to the next level? You consume their faeces. Yes, you read that right. Civet coffee is the most expensive coffee in the world and is made from the excreta of civet cats. India has recently delved into the production of this purr-fect coffee and we’re pretty excited. The production will start at a very small scale at Coorg in Karnataka. Being the third largest producer of coffee, we gotta try out everything that’s out there, right. If you’re wondering what this coffee looks like, here you go:


    Here’s the icky part: The coffee is made by getting the civet cat to ingest coffee beans. Then the cat’s poop is collected and processed. Why would someone do that, you ask? And WHY is this cat-poop thingy the most expensive coffee on the planet? Well, this coffee is considered more nutritious than other varieties of coffee and there are a lot of certifications involved too. The cat eats the flesh off of the coffee berries and not the actual bean plus the enzymes in the cat’s stomach enhance the bean flavour and that’s why this coffee is such a big hit all over the world!

    A startup called Coorg Consolidated Commodities is producing this cat poop coffee and they’ve also decided to open up a café to serve this coffee locally! This coffee is presently being sold locally under the name ‘Ainmane’ and is available only at the Club Mahindra Resort at Madikeri for Rs 8,000 per kg.

    source: http://www.inuth.com / inUth.com / Home> Lifestyle> Food / by Fukres / September 14th, 2017

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    September 18th, 2017adminArts, Culture & Entertainment

    Cultural programmes for Dasara at Madikeri will be organised from September 22 to 30 and renowned musicians and artistes will regale the public on the occasion.

    Dasara Cultural Committee president H.T. Anil stated in a release that the audience will be treated to a variety of programmes daily at Gandhi Maidan. The inaugural day events feature a saxophone recital, a dance by students of Saandipany School, Rasamanjari by Vikas Janaseva Trust group, fusion dance and music, folk art performances and more from 6.30 p.m.

    On September 23, there will be a comedy programme by members of Bhagamandala Abhinaya Kalamilana Charitable Trust followed by a dance by artistes from Sandalwood. Mahila Dasara programmes will be held on September 24 and will commence from 10 a.m. They will include ethnic dressing, garland making contests and more. At 6.30 p.m, renowned artiste Dr. Shamala Malnad and her team will present a concert that will be followed by dance programmes by various groups from Madikeri and other areas.

    On September 25, the public will be treated to Bollywood hip hop dance programmes besides a whistling concert featuring C.N. Madhav Bhat. On September 26, there will be a Children’s Day and rural sports events followed by cultural presentations in the evening.

    A concert by Bollywood singer Sangeetha Rajeev is the main feature for September 27 while on September 28, there will be a Yuva Dasara programme including dance and music from various groups.

    On September 30, to mark Vijayadashmi, the organisers have arranged a Karnataka Darshana laser show, Dollu Kunitha, Kamsale and other folk art programmes among others, Mr. Anil said.

    source: http://www.thehindu.com / The Hindu / Home> News> States> Karnataka / by Staff Reporter / Mysuru – September 18th, 2017

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    The House of Ramapuram, promoters of The Orange County Resorts, as part of taking their eco-friendly and community based resorts concept beyond the borders of Karnataka in India and also beyond India, has taken a new brand name, Evolve Back. Notwithstanding the renaming, the promoters assert that they will continue to uphold the time tested ethos and philosophy embedded in the ‘spirit of the land’. Jose Ramapuram, Director-Marketing, Evolve Back Luxury Resorts in an interaction with P Krishna Kumar elucidate the reasons behind the renaming, future expansion, investment challenges in the eco-resort space, etc.


    Q What made you rebrand Orange County, a well-established resort brand, as Evolve Back Luxury Resorts? What is the significance of this rebranding in the future journey of the company?
    We, The House of Ramapuram, are planters by tradition, diversified into the hospitality business in 1994 by setting up a small resort in their 100-year-old, 300-acre ChikkanaHalli Estate in Coorg. What came naturally to us was to share our way of life and warm hospitality with our primarily urban guests. As we are prepared to expand the locational footprint of our resorts to other parts of India, Africa and Asia, we felt we need a universal name that was inspired by our ‘Spirit of the land’ philosophy.

    The Orange County name was chosen for our first resort at Coorg, in memory of the captivating fragrance and flavour of this wonderful fruit which was, not long ago, part of the spirit of Coorg.


    Being crafted specifically for our resort in Coorg, it was not conveying the ‘Spirit of the land’ character of our new resorts – Kuruba Tribal Village themed resort at Kabini and the Vijayanagara Palace themed resort at Hampi.

    Moreover, we found that in the global tourism markets, the brand name ‘Orange County’ had a very strong association with a county in California, USA.

    Today, as we prepare to expand the locational footprint further in India, and to Africa and Asia, we realised the need to rename the brand to reflect our ‘Spirit of the land’ spirit but with a universal appeal. That’s how we arrived at a more appropriate name ‘Evolve Back’.

    Q The core of Orange County has been your commitment to sustainable and responsible luxury. What significant changes the rebranding would bring to that core or what additional aspect you would stress upon in Evolve Back?
    ‘Evolve Back’ is the new brand name given to the same ‘Spirit of the land’ experience which we strive to immerse all of our guests in. It is inspired by the past when the air, land and all of nature was pure, hospitality was from the heart, life was simple, nice and peaceful, culture was of the land and food was from the goodness of nature. Evolve Back is the signature style of delivering all these with the best in comforts and luxuries.

    In short, nothing has changed besides, just the name. The journey with Evolve Back will be the same mystical trip down the roads of history and culture. Despite the name change, the ownership, management, and operations or the company are still under the ownership of Orange County Resorts & Hotels Ltd.


    Q Since the rebranding coincides with the launch of your new property in Hampi, how would the brand ethos be reflecting in that property? How your latest resort in Hampi is different from the other two resorts?
    Evolve Back Kamalapura Palace in Hampi is inspired by the grandeur and magnificence of the 14th Century Vijayanagara Empire and is located 4 kilometres from the historic ruins of Hampi. Kamalapura Palace complements its surrounding by adding to its beauty and splendour, while enthralling its guests with its luxurious offerings.

    The Evolve Back property in all its resplendence is a glorious tribute to the hey days of the Vijayanagara empire. The entire project has been designed after spending many months with the locals and in studying the history of the region. Special care has been taken to weave in the cultural and traditional aspects of Hampi into the architecture, the theme, the interiors and other aspects of Evolve Back Kamalapura Palace. Visitors to the property will get to soak in a slice of history though the myriad elements that make a play for one’s senses during their stay.

    Q You have recently announced your plans to go scouting for properties outside Karnataka in India as well as to overseas destinations in Asia and Africa. Could you share your future investment plans and timelines for these developments?
    Evolve Back is looking to expand over the next three years, during which we expect to open four new properties across India and abroad. The investment for the expansion is estimated to be around INR 112 crore. This entire investment amount is planned to be raised with a mix of internal accruals and debt.

    We are looking to tap the new-found interest among people for experiential travel, especially at untapped destinations. We usually avoid overcrowded destinations, and scout for those un-spoilt markets where we sense the potential to grow — not just for us, but also for the destination.

    We will be developing a resort at Kumta in North Karnataka district over an area of 30 acres with an investment of INR 50 crore. This resort is planned to be themed on a local fishing village. We are also looking at a palace-themed resort at the medieval town of Mandu in Madhya Pradesh. This property is expected to see an investment of INR 35 crore.

    In the interim, a property each in African and an Asian country are being planned.


    Q What are the challenges investors in eco-resorts face in India considering it requires comparatively large land area at ecologically sensitive and fragile locations?
    The biggest challenge we face is in acquiring land in these locations. Land in many parts of India is largely fragmented and furthermore we will need to acquire the land from multiple individuals. The next challenge is in getting the required clearances for the project from multiple departments and signatories. Environmental laws are typically very rigid and hence take a lot of time and effort to comply with all the requirements.

    In addition to this, because of the vast distances between locations, basic services such as electricity and water are typically hard to come by. In fact, most of the basic infrastructure that we take for granted, is missing or inadequate and needs to be developed from scratch. All this is not only extremely time consuming causing unnecessary delays but also ends up escalating costs as a result.


    source: http://www.hospitalitybizindia.com / Hospitality Biz India.com / Home> Interview / Friday – September 15th, 2017

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    September 15th, 2017adminEducation

    The program offers courses on the history and culture of coffee.

    Steve Jennings / Stringer / Getty Images

    Steve Jennings / Stringer / Getty Images

    Illy, the Italy based coffee company, opened its first ever permanent U.S. location in San Francisco for the University of Coffee yesterday, next to the illy caffè on Montgomery Street. The “coffee education program,” will serve coffee growers, and other industry professionals, as well as anyone who is passionate coffee and hopes to learn more about it.

    “For illy, San Francisco is a natural choice for a first dedicated University location in America, given the city’s early embrace of high-quality coffee, its vibrant culinary scene and its well-earned reputation as a major hub for innovation and education,” Massimiliano Pogliani, CEO of illy, said in a statement.

    “[The] University of Coffee functions as a meeting place where not only coffee and hospitality professionals can train, but also as a destination where coffee enthusiasts and connoisseurs can share in their passion for coffee culture,” added Mark Romano, vice president of education, quality & sustainability at illy and manager for the US branch of the University of Coffee.

    The coffee company started offering educational classes back in 2008, through partnerships with The Culinary Institute of America and the International Culinary Center. In Italy, the clearly education minded company offers a Master’s degree course in Coffee Economics and Science, aimed at post-graduate students interested in pursuing careers in the coffee industry.

    A newly opened learning center at the Nespresso flagship store in New York City also offers coffee education courses, including how to use milk as an ingredient in coffee, sustainability in the coffee industry, and the “pure origin” of coffee. You can sign up for illy’s courses at the University of Coffee here.

    source: http://www.foodandwine.com / Food & Wine / Home> News / by Elisabeth Sherman / September 14th, 2017

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    Rashmika Mandanna is all set to star in Telugu film starring Tollywood latest sensation Vijay Sai Deverakonda, who is making waves with his trend setting film “Arjun Reddy”.

    While she has committed to a Telugu project with Naga Shourya and to another project with Ram, her third Tollywood outing is bigger as Rashmika is paired opposite none other than Vijay Sai Deverakonda of “Arjun Reddy” fame.

    An elated Rashmika tweeted: “Happy to sign the film with Vijay Devarakonda in Parasuram’s direction. Thanks to producers Allu Aravind and Bunny Vas.”

    Originally, Lavanya Tripathi was signed for the project. For reasons unknown, she walked out of the film even before it went on the floors.

    In Sandalwood, Rashmika is working in “Anjaniputra” opposite Puneeth Rajkumar and “Chamak” opposite Ganesh.

    source: http://www.vimocafe.com / VimoCafe / Home> Entertainment> Sandalwood / by Rohit Kumar / September 08th, 2017

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    September 15th, 2017adminBusiness & Economy


    ChooseMyBicycle, a venture by Abbishek Bharadwaj and Rohit Kuttappa along with two others, offers fully fitted bicycles to clients

    It is not uncommon to find cyclists whiz past you in traffic on their way to work or for that matter groups of them take over the roads in the wee hours of the morning on the weekends. Catching on fast amongst the fitness and environmentally conscious, cycling is finding more and more takers in the city. And if you seem to be swaying towards the practice as well and are looking to buy a fully fitted bike to meet your needs, help is at hand with ChooseMyBicycle, the latest startup in the city to address the issue.

    The online marketplace provides users with fully assembled bicycles, a feature often not found in other portals, according to Abbishek Bharadwaj, co-founder and head sales at ChooseMyBicycle.

    Launched in 2012 as a club by RL Ravichandran, Rohit Kuttappa, Akshay Pillay and Bharadwaj to promote cycling in Chennai, ChooseMyBicycle gradually grew to become a platform for reviews. “People wanted accurate information while buying bikes and so we evolved into an information portal,” says Rohit Kuttappa, co-founder and CEO of the company, “One could compare prices and models on our portal back then. There was no commerce involved. I’d say the business evolved based on consumer needs. So by December 2016 we launched the e-commerce aspect of ChooseMyBicycle and became an online portal that not only provides information and reviews, but also is a marketplace for bicycles that are delivered to the users in a fully assembled state.”

    The idea to deliver fully assembled bikes, says Bharadwaj, “stemmed from the fact that while many online portals deliver bikes, they are not fitted. It is then up to people to find a good technician to put the bike together; and that is often challenging. To address this, we take the bicycle from the manufacturer, assemble it completely, pack it in a specially created packaging carton and ship it to the customer. We’ve also tied up with Fix My Cycle to provide after sales services, for ease of access.” Fix My Cycle is an online service that sends qualified bike technicians to the client’s home for bike servicing and repairs.

    While the company formally launched in December 2016, they made their first sale in March 2017. Since then, they’ve managed over 600 sales across the country. “We’ve shipped as far as Srinagar, Tinsukia and Kutch,” says Bharadwaj.

    “While we stock everything from tricycles for toddlers to performance bikes for adults, we find that the average selling price on our website is between ₹12,500 to ₹15,000. These are for entry level performance bikes. Annually, this sector grows at a rate of 22% to 25% in terms of market scenario,” says Kuttappa.

    The company which has so far been bootstrapped and has banked on angel funding is now looking to raise funding to expand the business. “In the next six to 12 months we’re looking to set up ‘experience stores’. These will be spaces where people can’t actually buy a bike, but can try different models and get a feel of it before making a purchase online. And as a brand, we plan to ensure speedy delivery of bikes within a period of three to four days. We’ve already identified logistic hubs for these. And along with Fix My Cycle, we plan to expand services to 48 cities over the next year,” says Kuttappa.

    source: http://www.thehindu.com / The Hindu / Home> Society / by Ranjani Ranjendra / September 14th, 2017

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