One man’s quest to find different types of honey and educate people on its consumption led him to start one of the country’s first honey boutiques.
It was an amalgam of experience, education and desire to offer something unique, safe and wholesome that got Sudarshan Rao thinking about honey. His love for honey began in Northeastern India where he was working on a tea project. After tasting the local honey, Rao was surprised at its depth of flavour. Thus was born HoneyRUs in a bid to change people’s outlook towards the nectar.
The genesis“The foundation of HoneyRus has been research,” says Rao. “I aim to be a source of information on the fascinating and evolving world of bees and honey. For example, honey is now used in surgical bandages for its capacity to heal wounds that have become resistant to antibiotics. In that context it is called surgi honey.” Rao spent almost three years before they put their product out in the market. “We wanted to be really sure about our products so our research continues to be multidimensional.” They specifically provide single flower honey, educate people on what makes it unique, health benefits, and its usage.
“Your question is your answer!” he exclaims. “Honey is a complex food product, it is antibacterial, antiviral, and it’s hygroscopic (absorbs moisture). The fact that people wonder “why honey’ “what is so different about it” is what drove us to research more on the topic. It is a rather underrated food product in India that has health benefits and gourmet potential.” “We go where the bees go!” says Rao. “A bees’ job is to pollinate and the honey, a building block for hive building, and we’re the thieves. Jokes apart, the best way to source honey is to let the bees do what they do best.” As an agribusiness professional, Rao feels that there is no substitute to the real thing. The closest one can get to the source, the better.
More than just one
The Honey Board of USA recognizes about 300 monofloral varieties. Polyfloral varieties are infinite. When we say a honey is monofloral we mean the bees have foraged mostly on one particular crop. “If your honey doesn’t taste, look, feel, and flow differently each time you buy one, you aren’t eating the right honey! There’s hundreds of flower species so it’s not possible for your honey to taste the same each time.
There are mono and poly flora honeys, blended ones, processed and unprocessed variants. At HoneyRus we carry seasonal honey and predominantly single flower source variants.” HoneyRus has a generous collection of raw and infused varieties such as neem, acacia, wild borage and rainforest honey (from the Sunderbans). In the variant they have ginger, cinnamon and tulsi.
A green connect
Since the team at HoneyRus works so closely with nature, they are invariably affected by the levels of wastage witnessed on a daily basis. Which is why when it came to building the boutique they kept two things in mind; Simple and Recycle. “We have used-reused wood and engaged small and independent professionals for assistance and the build-up,” says Rao.
A delicate eco-system
The honey industry is severely exposed to consumerism, so the need for honey and honey-based products is constantly high. “There is also a growing demand for honey internationally, due to their colony collapse and consumption,” he says. “The challenge this poses to an intricate ecosystem is the burden it places upon these angels of agriculture. Be it indiscriminate use of pesticides, poor management of bee colonies, rapid spread of diseases among bees, and in some cases declining floral resources, increasing costs of food testing, an item consumer demands, but is not always willing to pay for, and inadequate consumer awareness.”
In the long run, HoneyRus hopes to show people what can be done with honey as food, a healthy alternative and a cosmetic applicant. They are also planning to sell honey-based products sooon. They deliver across India and are located at 14th A Main Road, Indiranagar, Bengaluru. Call 7022224850