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Bean-to-Bar Chocolatier Girija Gunjkar, The Founder of Bakeroma Foods and The Dark Side

097171 66233 | info@bakeromafoods.com

Love chocolate but worried to devour it? No worries, Bakeroma Foods is your one-stop solution to having chocolates without a hint of guilt or fear. Bean-to-Bar chocolatier Girija Gunjkar, the founder of Bakeroma Foods and The Dark Side, specializes in making healthy chocolates directly from the Indian cocoa beans. Vegan, Keto, and Sugar-free chocolates are the three categories she has expertise in. A chocolate lover and health-enthusiast herself, she does it all from consulting nutritionists to using authentic ingredients directly from farmers/manufacturers to also substituting white refined sugar with jaggery, to ensure a guilt-free chocolate experience to all her customer.

KYE: How do you manage both, being a mom and an entrepreneur?
Girija:
As far as being an entrepreneur is concerned, I follow effective time management. I normally plan my day well in advance. Also, you know over the years I have learned how to prioritize activities depending on how urgent they are or how important they are. Sometimes unexpected things come up but I am able to manage.
As a mother, I think I’m truly blessed. I have a very supportive family which includes an incredible 9-year-old daughter. She has been watching me bake and make chocolates and run my own business since she was two years old. What I have learned from this is that it is absolutely essential to involve children in your activities at least a little bit so that the curiosity is taken care of and then you can carry on with your work

KYE: What was your motivation behind being an entrepreneur, having your own venture i.e. The Dark Side?
Girija:
I have a sweet tooth and I love cakes, pastries desserts chocolates Indian mithai but over the years what I have also learned is that it is absolutely essential to follow a healthy lifestyle which includes a lot of clean eating which means that it’s low in carbs or less of sugar. Fortunately, when you’re in a country like India where you have an alternative to practically everything it was easy to adapt to a healthier lifestyle. Also, my 9-year-old daughter is more concerned about her health than all of us combined in the house. She does love a slice of pizza but she is not really fond of junk food so that’s been the biggest motivation for me

KYE: What in this field gives you a sense of accomplishment?
Girija:
Every time I try out a new recipe or I launch a new product, a lot of mothers reach out to me for healthy alternatives for the children. Kids love Nutella. I don’t think I really need to say anything about this and we came up with a healthy alternative to the chocolate hazelnut spread which mothers and kids love. Also, when nutritionists reach out for collaborations for healthy chocolates for their clients. This makes me feel so happy that you know people are willing to try out healthy, different, unique things.
Love chocolate but worried to devour it? No worries, Bakeroma Foods is your one-stop solution to having chocolates without a hint of guilt or fear. Bean-to-Bar chocolatier Girija Gunjkar, the founder of Bakeroma Foods and The Dark Side, specializes in making healthy chocolates directly from the Indian cocoa beans. Vegan, Keto, and Sugar-free chocolates are the three categories she has expertise in. A chocolate lover and health-enthusiast herself, she does it all from consulting nutritionists to using authentic ingredients directly from farmers/manufacturers to also substituting white refined sugar with jaggery, to ensure a guilt-free chocolate experience to all her customer.

KYE: What were the barriers/challenges you faced and how did you overcome them?
Girija:
When I started my baking journey and this is way back in 2012 you know one of the things that everyone kept saying is that you know she is following a hobby you know she’s doing something because she has time on her hands or she is doing it because time pass hota hai. So making people realize that you know you can now have a hobby in which you can turn into a profession while still being able to fulfill your duties as a mother or a daughter or a wife. Also, I think this was emphasized a lot during the lockdown when everyone was working from home right? I think there is a shift in paradigm which is absolutely essential

KYE: At this point, what are the factors you think are required to achieve your business aspirations?
Girija:
The kind of field I am in, the healthy chocolates that I make it’s absolutely essential to create awareness and educate people on what we are eating and why it’s crucial now to look at the ingredient label before you consume anything

KYE: How has this venture changed you as a person?
Girija:
When I started this venture 2 years back, I hardly knew anything about digital marketing or social media marketing like you would call it which I am now learning. Also, effective time management is something that I have learned and I have also become more of a listener

KYE: What are your words of wisdom or message to the budding entrepreneurs out there?
Girija:
Persevere, keep learning and experimenting, and most importantly establish a relationship with your customer no matter how big or small you are as an entrepreneur. It’s truly required to have a customer connect. I know sales are important no doubt about it but prioritizing customer education will also eventually boost sales

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Written by KYE

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