In an exclusive interview with Restaurant India, Akshat Singhania, Director at Mama Mia believes in sourcing ingredients from all over the globe.
How it all began?
We did not actually find Mama Mia, it was a pre-established business. My partner, Adhiraj & I were looking for something to do together. We are both really passionate about food. I still want to walk in to really good restaurants and try amazing foods. I did food blogging as well and when I came back, we saw that Mama Mia is looking for changing hats. We saw it as an opportunity to take it forward because there was lot of potential and scope in it when we took over this thing. We had five outlets in Kolkata now we have taken it to fifteen.
Packaging it right
We spent a whole year in deciding the quality of packaging because we do not want to deal with something which is not good enough that is why we import our raw material. People have a lot of choices; there are plenty of ice creams available in the market but the thing is many of them do not consider the packaging. Most of them are packaged into pink plastics which you use and throw it away; it is unrecyclable, unhealthy and you can’t even use that product again. What we thought is India is very good at recycling things; so why not make a thing which is nicer to recycle which you don’t feel bad at recycling and using at your home. What we have witnessed that sometimes people do not only come to buy ice creams but they are coming to get those tubs as well, that is the quality we sell.
Efforts put into
A lot, I would say. We spent year in researching and developing the packaging. Then we have worked hard building fat free ice creams, spent good time of money, time and effort on our product. It was an uphill battle to source the ingredients from all over the globe.
Growing with competition
We don’t see any competition because when you buy an ice cream as a layman, you just grab the ice cream and take it home. You can’t even see the product, all you can see a beautifully crafted plastic. What happens most of time in F&B sector people might turn off their freezers at night in order to save electricity and then ice cream is going to melt and re-freeze again. If that happens you can actually see it on our packaging, our customer would say that I want another one. Our customers are spoiled for good taste. Whenever we do audits or surprise visits at our outlets and see icy re-freeze product, we just bring it back because we can’t afford to reach that to our customer. Maintaining a good relationship with customer is one of our specialities.
Uniqueness of your product
Our ice cream is fat free and then we do not add artificial colours in the ice cream. The colours are originated from the ingredients itself for example; if it’s a strawberry flavoured ice cream then it will have the colours of natural strawberries churned.
Are you planning to open an a la carte restaurant?
We are focusing Mamma Mia only for now and keep innovate it in a better way.