Women make organic soap at the Neev unit in Hurlung on the outskirts of Jamshedpur. Telegraph picture
Made in Jamshedpur, sold across the world.
City-based NGO New Education and Environment Visions (Neev), which sells herbal soaps, shampoos, moisturisers, hand wash, massage oils and face packs in 130 retail outlets across India, is actively scouting takers abroad for its organic line-up.
If all goes well, the herbal products made in their Hurlung workshop, on the outskirts of the steel city, may get markets in the US, Indonesia, Malaysia, Japan, Switzerland, Germany and Singapore.
Though Neev has not yet started exporting its products, it usually sends a sample consignment to foreign countries and waits for the next one to be ordered.
“To export, one needs a licence and that is only given when a bulk amount is sent outside,” said Neev director Shikha Jain.
Currently, the team makes 5,000 soap bars — their mainstay — and a total of 10,000 pieces of various other products in a month.
Started in 2007, the NGO has employed around 25 poor women who manufacture these eco-friendly products from plants grown on the 4,000sqft farmland of the organisation.
“Exhibitions in various cities and networking have helped us to get a hold of the market. The other factor that has helped us is the growing awareness among people about herbal products,” said Jain.
The best part of the products is that they is purely organic.
“Neither is there any heating process involved nor are any preservatives used. This increases the benefits of our products,” Jain added
So, what is their USP?
“There are no side effects of the products. People have liked them as they are nowadays more conscious about what they use,” Jain added.
She added cities such as Jamshedpur need to look beyond retail brands and get used to herbal stuff.
The NGO is planning to launch organic kajal, roll-ons and henna powder infused with the goodness of different medicinal plants. Plans are afoot to launch a range of shaving soaps for men.
As a part of their social responsibility activities, Neev has also started an English medium school in Hurlung, offering quality education to students from modest families.