Anandini Swaminathan Coffee Plantation Owner, Blogger
Co-founder of a coffee and pepper estate, dietitian, blogger, fitness enthusiast, traveller these are some the roles that Anandini Swaminathan juggles with. She completed her undergraduate studies scoring the highest grades in the B.Sc. Nutrition and Food Sciences course from Chennai. Thereafter, Anandini obtained a Masters in Medical Science degree in Human Nutrition from the University of Glasgow, Scotland.
She started her career as a dietitian / nutritionist in Bangalore working for a nutraceutical company first and then in a nutrition clinic. Realising that she would ultimately shoulder the responsibility of looking after the family business (which is running a coffee estate), Anandini decided to move back home in late 2013 and started learning the ropes of managing a coffee plantation.
Anandini co-founded Bear Town Produce in early 2015. The idea was inspired by the family business in Yercaud – maintaining a coffee and pepper plantation. The plantation is called Karadiyur Estate which, when translated from Tamil to English, is Bear Town. The idea is to supply the produce from the plantation to the customer. Currently only supplying pepper to chefs and restaurants in India, Anandini is aspiring to make their coffee available in the market in 2016.
She has also been consulting online with people looking for nutrition and diet plans. Confessions of a Dietitian (www.confessionsofadietitian.in) is a blog that she authors to share her views on healthy living.
High point in career
I cannot define a specific high point in my career. Every time I am contacted regarding a nutrition consultation or Bear Town Produce order I am ecstatic. There’s a certain sense of pride when your brand is growing and I thrive on this. For me, the little things always count.
Most challenging assignment so far
Marketing has always been a challenge for me. My strengths lie in my ability to work efficiently and manage my time well, not so much in being a people person. Having started a business of my own I have to rely on myself to market the brand well. So far I have made a lot of progress from when I first started, so this is promising.
With my interests lying in food, nutrition and growing produce, my biggest inspiration is Jamie Oliver. His work is sort of along the same lines as what I am currently working on. Growing fresh produce and helping people live healthier lives through the diet charts I plan, keeps me going.
Most important milestone in life
Studying in Glasgow was a turning point in my life and a milestone I think of fondly. Aside from the academic experience and its contribution to my career, my year in Glasgow changed my personality. I learned a lot from amazing people I studied with and met along the way.
Women are the better halves. What does it mean?
This is a big responsibility. Women are expected to keep it together no matter what. It’s important to strike a balance between career, home life and so far I think I’ve been able to handle that well without making too many mistakes.