The Good always overcomes the Evil. Or so we all believe.
At Dushera, as the nation celebrates the vanquishing of Raavanan, we also have to believe. At Bio Basics, under that very belief lies a fervent hope. A hope that you, supported by the largest organic granary of India (Bio Basics), will vanquish the Evil in our food system. That you, by consuming any of our 60+ organic rice varieties from across the country, will trounce the same-old, chemicalized, homogenised, white, fully-polished rice that most Indians eat today.
For us, the rice most Indians eat today is the Raavanan with all his ten ugly heads. Although an accomplished scholar and celebrated King, Raavanan took the wrong turn and ended up representing Evil. Just like the good old rice of yesteryears, which was once revered, nutritious, healthy and part of all our ceremonies, now forced to be the Evil harming us all.
But to trounce the Rice Raavanan, we need to first study its ten ugly heads:
1. Weedicides used to treat soil even before the rice saplings get transplanted, to prevent weeds & to save cost on labour.
2. Chemical fertilizers in copious amounts to enhance rice production, polluting our soil, air and water.
3. Pesticides, as the rice plants grow, supposedly to exterminate the pests that attack the plant.
4. Fumigants to keep rodents and pests away, when stored in godowns after harvest.
5. Loss of diversity resulting from growing the very same rice variety across the country (thanks to Green Revolution), leading to the loss of 1000s of indigenous varieties.
6. Manipulation of the rice grain to add Vitamin A to it (a.k.a. “Golden Rice”) in the 1980s, or more recently, to add iron and other minerals to it (a.k.a. Fortified rice), denaturing rice as we know it.
7. Over-polishing in the mills, where most of the bran is taken out to make the rice whiter and less nutritious, as demanded by retailers who love higher shelf life.
8. Low satiety from this white rice that contains only starch when it reaches our tables, that tastes bland and doesn’t satiate our hunger.
9. Over-eating of rice, when satiety is lacking, thereby harming ourselves.
10. High Glycemic Index of this rice, when eaten as fully polished white rice with no bran, leaving us vulnerable to disease.
All these ugly heads stare at us from our plates every single meal of rice we eat. Rice Raavanan laughs derisively at our helplessness and ignorance.
But this war has been waging for long. Organic rice farmers and seed savers of heritage rices have been fighting against Rice Raavanan for decades. Like Lord Rama, they have traversed long distances in pursuit of righteousness, of Dharma.
And now Bio Basics has curated 60+ rices as arrows in their quiver to destroy the Evil of Rice Raavanan. Now, will the Lord Rama in you use these arrows to vanquish the Evil that harms us all?
Aim at the navel. We are here to help.