This Entrepreneur is Promoting Conscious Living through A Sustainable Marketplace

By: WE Staff

We are living in the era where ‘climate crisis’ has become a reality. While pushing for policy changes is a key step, yet there is also need to adopt a more sustainable way of life. Sustainable or conscious living entails having the understanding of the impact one’s lifestyle choices have on the world around us. It also promotes making choices for everyone to live better and lighter.

Consumers today are increasingly opting for sustainable products and businesses. according to The Economist Intelligence Unit, there has been a 71 percent increase in online searches for sustainable goods globally over the past five years.

A young entrepreneur, Gunjan Jindal Poddar is on a mission to simplify shopping for sustainable and eco-friendly products. She is doing so through her marketplace for sustainable products. founded in 2021, Amala Earth derives its name from the concept of Amala Consciousness, the highest form of purity in Buddhism.

Amala Earth features over 60,000 products, and brings together all brands, products, experts, and consumers on a common platform. It carries a variety of products, right from responsible fashion, home decor, ethical beauty, mindful eating, wellness to gifting and more. The platform’s aim is to drive a change in the consumption patterns of individuals and enable them to incorporate organic products, eco-friendly products and locally sourced products in everyday living.

In a conversation with Women Entrepreneur India magazine, we speak to Gunjan about her entrepreneurial journey, the rise of conscious living and more.

Tell us about the formative years of your life. Did you always envision becoming an entrepreneur?

During my formative years, I was always an independent thinker and was curious to discover new ideas. I have also been inclined towards leading a sustainable and conscious lifestyle that is all about making everyday earth-friendly. And, growing up in a business family, I always wanted to be an entrepreneur.

You ventured into entrepreneurship at the young age of 22. What lessons did you learn as a young entrepreneur that honed your business running skills further?

Embarking on entrepreneurship at the age of 22, I started Passion Tea, with the tagline 'my cup of tea.' It was a unique enterprise to give people a chance to have conversations over tea, since India is a tea-drinking nation. As I started a chain of tea cafes as my first venture, it helped in refining my acumen for running a business. It was during this journey that I realised the significance of adaptability and knowledge. I understood how as a businesswoman, I need to learn and grow in sync with the marketplace.

What led you to establish Amala Earth? When and how did the idea strike you to establish a marketplace for eco-friendly and sustainable products?

In the ever-evolving journey of life, I realised the impact of our choices on the world around us. As a young businesswoman and a mother, I reflected on my own lifestyle and felt compelled to share the knowledge and insights I have gained. Our legacy for the future lies in the well-being of our planet, and it is with this conviction that Amala Earth was born—a sustainable marketplace dedicated to earth-friendly products.

The inspiration behind Amala Earth stems from the concept of Amala Consciousness, the highest form of purity in Buddhism. We aspire to embody this purity and promote conscious living, cultivating a community of individuals who share the same values and are driven to make a positive impact on the environment. Our mission is to bring together brands, products, experts, and individuals to create a world where all living beings can coexist harmoniously.

At Amala Earth, we go beyond being just a marketplace for selling earth-friendly and consciously manufactured products. We have a holistic vision to inspire and instil a mindset of change, encouraging people to embrace a sustainable lifestyle. We believe that true transformation happens when sustainability becomes an integral part of our everyday lives.

Eco-friendly and sustainable products have steadily been gaining popularity in the Indian marketplace. In your opinion what has led to this resurgence in the adoption of a sustainable way of life?

The resurgence in the adoption of eco-friendly products and sustainable products in the Indian marketplace is driven by increasing awareness among consumers. People are educating themselves about healthy food choices, sustainability, and the impact of their consumption on the environment. This shift in consumer behaviour reflects a conscious effort to embrace a more mindful way of life.

Tell us about the parameters you keep in mind while picking and choosing products to be showcased on Amala Earth?

We consider several parameters when picking and choosing products. First and foremost, we prioritise the use of natural and sustainable materials in the product's production. We also assess the brand's commitment to ethical sourcing, fair trade practices, and eco-conscious manufacturing processes. Additionally, we evaluate the product's environmental impact, recyclability, and packaging practices. By adhering to these parameters, we ensure that every product on Amala Earth reflects our dedication to promoting a sustainable and eco-friendly lifestyle.

Additionally, we have implemented a robust scoring system known as the "Butterfly Score" to evaluate each brand based on a range of parameters. This comprehensive system assesses brands on a scale of 1 to 8, with higher scores reflecting superior performance. The parameters we consider in this scoring system are thoughtfully chosen to offer valuable insights into a brand's overall sustainability, ethics, and environmental impact. By providing this scoring system, we empower consumers to make informed choices and promote transparency throughout the purchasing process.

How do you foresee consumers’ consumption of eco-friendly and sustainable products evolving in the near future? How will Amala Earth align with these changing consumer needs?

Looking ahead, we envision consumers' consumption of eco-friendly and sustainable products evolving in the near future. As a brand, Amala Earth aims to align with these changing consumer needs by continuously expanding our range of earth-friendly products and introducing innovative solutions. We will stay abreast of evolving trends and work closely with our partners to offer a diverse and sustainable product selection that caters to the evolving preferences of our customers.

The usage of sustainable materials is booming across lifestyle areas, be it a surge of clean  beauty products or the use of organic cotton fabric in everyday apparel or home décor in natural materials.  Consumers are looking for solutions that are healthier for them, their families, and the environment as they strive for a conscious way of living. As a brand, our ethos lies in driving the change and providing these alternative solutions under one roof. With people now looking consciously at other options, whether it is driven by thoughts of mindful eating or buying local or connecting to the Indian heritage, or contributing to reducing the carbon footprint, the time is right to offer earth-friendly options to make informed decisions.

Drawing from your personal experience can you tell us what goes into building a successful venture in today’s business climate? What are some pointers that aspiring entrepreneurs must keep in mind throughout their journey?

Drawing from my personal experience, building a successful venture in today's business climate requires several key factors. Aspiring entrepreneurs must cultivate a strong vision and mission that resonate with their target audience. They should be open to learning, adapt quickly to changes, and surround themselves with a supportive network. It's crucial to embrace innovation, prioritise customer satisfaction, and remain resilient in the face of challenges. Continuous improvement, staying updated with industry trends, and maintaining a strong work ethic are also vital for success.