If you're a 90s kid, you may know the ecstasy of being offered those sweet little candy treats. Undeniably Pan Pasand by Ravalgaon is one of our most favorite candies we spent our childhoods with. Definitely, it spread millions of smiles and made life look a lot happier. Did you ever try to find whose idea it was? Let's find out.
Ravalgaon confectioneries were started by Walchand Hirachand Doshi in 1933 after his sugarcane revolution that was led at several barren lands in Maharashtra and resulted in the opening of one of the first-ever sugar mills in India. It's been more than 80 years now, and Ravalgaon remains one of the best swadeshi brands that have made a permanent place in people's hearts. It always makes us all get nostalgic.
Pan Pasand and Mango Mood were the two most amazing candies we could never get enough of. While Pan Pasand made us feel like adults with its paan flavor and red color, it left on the tongues; the other one was loved for its shiny yellow-green wrapper. Despite being children, it let us enjoy a perfect paan and our favorite seasonal fruit throughout the year.
However, only a few of you may know that Ravalgaon, along with offering the fondest memories in the 80s and 90s, transformed a backward region in Maharashtra into a successful township. In fact, it was a source of employment and revenue generation for thousands of farmers and villagers. You will be amazed to know the fascinating tale of Ravalgaon and its impactful journeys that continues.
Recollecting Events From The Past
Walchand Hirachand Doshi was born in Solapur to a privileged business family. When he set up Ravalgaon, he was already a well-known person. Walchand is also known as the 'Father of the Indian Transportation Industry' and worked in several different areas. In 1908, Walchand Industries Limited was one of the first makers of railway tunnels.
Under Walchand, it also established the foundation of the first swadeshi shipping company in India, the Hindustan Aeronautics Limited and Premier Automobiles, which was India's first indigenous automobile manufacturers, and the Scindia Shipyard or Hindustan Shipyard Limited. According to the current Executive Director of Ravalgaon, Nihal Doshi, Walchand was directed to Ravalgaon, a small village in Nashik, during a train journey in the early 1900s.
Incorporation Of Ravalgaon Sugar Farm Limited
Walchand came to know about the thousands of acres of semi-arid land that could be used for agricultural purposes from one of the government officials. He decided to purchase 1,500 acres of barren land and used machinery from his construction business to clear away the rocks and stones. He laid emphasis on farmers' contribution to the economic development of India. Also, this act promoted sugarcane cultivation in India, which was probably never given a thought before this.
Once the stones were replaced with fertile soil, Walchand took the help of chemists, engineers, and agriculturalists to experiment with different crops on the land. While these experiments went on for a decade, Walchand decided to go with sugarcane farming and established a sugar mill. Ravalgaon Sugar Farm Limited got incorporated in the year 1933. Ravalgaon further turned into a brand, and the production of confectionaries was started. However, Walchand did not stop there. He introduced a similar mill model in Kalamb, a few kilometers away from Pune, which is now known as Walchandnagar.
The two mills not only generated employment across the Nashik belt it also offered a direct market to the farmers and a smoothly operating supply chain to the vendors, making it beneficial for all. Definitely, Walchand has to be credited for the sugarcane revolution in the entire state. Average one person from all the families residing on this belt was known to works at two mills. As per Nihal Doshi, they had been striving to keep up the goodwill, legacy, and quality over all these years. It is said that the company split up in the late 90s when Nihal's father, Harshwardhan Doshi, took over.
Keeping Up The Authenticity
Ravalgaon has an ISO 22000 certified factory that offers ten 100 percent vegetarian products, including milk, coffee powder, mango pulp, etc. While authenticity has been the major focus at Ravalgaon, the company had been active in collaborating and guide the farmers about using the most effective farming practices to support sustainable procedures at the factory. They have energy-efficient and environment-friendly utilities at the factory. There are thousands of trees and greenery around the factory.
In fact, the factory has a comfortable, non-corporate environment to make the employees feel good. Each product here is thoughtfully designed and carefully manufactured. While the candies remained packed in glass jars, wrappers were introduced later and emerged as an evolution in Ravalgaon's confectionaries. They tried to maintain transparency and keep up their consumers' trust through transparent wrappers. Later some more changes were made.
And this was how we got to savor our favorite candies by Ravalgaon. Well, we still do.