Thursday, September 24, 2015

Drink the juice and eat the container – Digest the future !

Food Packages, most of the times, mess up with your routine works! A worn white kurti, while opening your lunch box? To overcome this, the packaging industry has been constantly been working hard to deliver sustainable alternate systems. More substantively than cosmetic details like labels or logos, a food’s container will counsel whimsy, environmental consciousness, or engineering. Packaging provides consumers’ initial and last impressions of a product. And obviously, yes, the gluttons are getting carried away extensively by the packaging, as well.
 Global Food packaging industry is a mammoth sector that has been projected to reach a value of $310 million by 2019. Numbers suggesting positive growth in this arena is a cheerful sign; however, excess usage of plastic packaging materials is a serious environmental threat. For the alarming concern, the packaging industry has been constantly thriving to for the continuing non-biodegradable plastic usage trend.
Currently, should I say, for the last couple of years, US companies were grappling to be spearhead the "untapped market" for wrappers you can munch in along with the chocolates. The Dumbledore of food technology, Harvard wizard Dr David Edwards, has now succored to WikiCells - an edible membrane made from a biodegradable polymer and food particles - that can imitate "bottles" found in nature, such as grape skins. Point to note is that, he came out with a concept of “Breathable chocolates” Le Whif! In edible packaging platform WikiFoods, Inc. introduces to another sustainable concept of wrapping or encapsulating the foods with an edible membrane called WikiPearls.
 Loliware, a US based startup organization has instigated the edible and biodegradable cups. Agar gel (sea weed) is the key base material for these cups. Loliware is also offering cups in different flavors and colors to add some excitement for the consumers. Currently the price of 4 cups is around $11.95. Loliware being an early bird in this technology, affordability and scaling up are the key challenges according to experts.
Keeping aside, the wow concepts described, the “food – experts” are worried of certain facts stipulated as follows
o   Physicochemical and microbial stability and barrier properties of these edible membranes of different foods.
o   Scalability and acceptability for primary packaging
o   Functionality of these starches during digestion
o   Efficiency of the material to perform at range of temperature during storage
o   Are governmental regulations ready to revise the policies
After reading all these, you must also remember that edible packaging materials are not a total unhackneyed ones for us:: the ice cream eaters ! Our ice cream cones - a century old concept?

In a similar context, these could be looked similar to those dish washer tablets, which  you drop in 'wrapped' and they dissolve in the machine? Except this time the machine is you and me ? Guess, its time for our digestive systems to take up the test and show its “digestive” power ! 

Friday, September 11, 2015

Innovations Speak - Chinnikrishnan Innovation Awards - 2015

"Whatever the rich man enjoys, the poor man should also be able to afford"  This Powerful statement of the Revolutionary Visionary, made happen, "Innovations" to be acknowledged and supported for. The Visionary is none other than. Mr.(Late) Chinni Krishnan in whose memory commemorates the Chinnikrishnan Innovation Awards organized by Cavin Kare India.

It was all about innovations, Investments, Risks, social utility and Finally, success. Three such innovations, a mannequin for cardio pulmonary resuscitation (CPR) training, A sanitary napkin destroying Machine and a wrapping machine for the development of weavers,  were unanimously chosen to bag "Chinnikrishnan Innovation Awards - 2015" jointly organized by CavinKare India and Madras Management Association on 9th September at Kamarajar Arangam.
Standing (L to R): Gp Capt R Vijayakumar, VSM, (Retd), Executive Director, MMA, Mr T Shivaraman, President, MMA & Managing Director & CEO, Shriram EPC Ltd, Distinguished Guest of Honour Mr Ravi Gururaj, Chairman & Co–Founder, Frictionless Ventures Pvt. Ltd, Mr P A Sekar, P A Sekar Scientific Research Center, Prof M Manivannan Merkel Haptic Systems Pvt. Ltd., Distinguished Chief Guest, Mr M M Murugappan, Vice Chairman, Murugappa Group, Mr V Ramachandran, CEO-President, Glo Life Care Equipments Pvt Ltd, Mr C K Ranganathan Chairman & Managing Director, CavinKare Pvt Ltd and Mr Terry Thomas Innovation Center Leader and Partner, Operations, Advisory Services, Ernst & Young LLP 

The event witnessed a whole bunch of technocrats and Industrialists, who were equally passionate in lifting up the others to their breed of Entrepreneurs. MM Murugappan, vice-chairman, Murugappa Group was the chief guest, Ravi Gururaj, chairman and founder, Frictionless Ventures Pvt Ltd , Terry Thomas E&Y Ltd, Cptn. Vijaykumar, C.K.Rajkumar, CK Ashok Kumar, Dr.Mariazeena and few other Entrepreneurs and Industrialists were also present at the event!

CK Ranganathan addressing the crowd, commented that Indian quality of innovation and research is on par or even excellent than the international standards . When these brains tapped for extra - ordinary innovations, can stimulate the Indian economy to reach greater heights. He was also happy that MMA has consented to jointly present the Chinnikrishnan awards from this year onwards and this entity will be surely be a unique platform in encouraging entrepreneurialism at its best.

CK Rajkumar - the brain behind the Velvette shampoos, nostalgically recalled a few memories of his father Mr.Chinni Krishnan, who was the father of Sachet revolution. Being a teacher by profession, Chinni Krishnan had envisioned that innovations would lead to betterment of life.

The crowd witnessed a fiercy - thought provoking presentation on Innovations - VUCA - how reality over took fiction and how fictions inspire the real time innovations - A spell bound presentation by Ravi guru raj, who extolled on 1X improvement strategy and 10X opportunities for employment and a good quality of life.

Mr Shivraman , president, MMA expressed his delight in having this joint organization in bringing out the fifth edition of ChinniKrishnan Innovation Awards and promised that MMA would assist hence forth. Talking about the shortlisting, Raman mentioned, there were four rounds to shortlist. Of the 200+ recieved applications, 106 were short listed on the basis of the social utility and relevance, 39 passed the first round of screening of which 17 were shortlisted after a proper technical evaluation. only 9 upon 17 were able to clear the video crew round where the entire process and the day to day activities with the innovations were captured and concepted on. Finally after all that had taken place, the three best applicants were unanimously selected as award winners. Mr.Raman also mentioned that the selection criteria was very stringent and transparent that every one should know what had happened.

Listening to the success stories. Prof.M.Manivannan, the mannequin  maker of  CPR, expressed his gratitude to his students Kanagapriya and Varathurai, who were behind his success in bringing out the mannequin that could be of social utility.

Mr.V.Ramachandran, the innovator of Napkin vending and destroying machine, gave a peice of mind to help the innovators and young budding people, to sustain the flame of innovation and not to be carried away by other influences. He also stated that, any technocrats, can work under some employer upto the age of 35 and not a day late to that and then should start on their own. they must be willing to take risk, choose the right product and bring about revolution for the cause of the society.

It was indeed a pure bliss for the audience and dignitaries to listen to Mr.P.A.Shekar - P A Shekar Scientific , who hailed from a small village and innovated a mechanical weaving machine that saved the tough times of the weavers. He said his mission was to do until he could and as far as he could.

Finally, Mr.Murugappan - the guest of the day - expressed his pleasure in witnessing the icons of innovations on a single stage. Every innovator should check if his innovation is a value for money or valued by many or both and preferably both. When Shekar innovated for livelyhood, Ramachandran for a clean and a hygenic society and Manivannan took up entrepreneurship for a service with capability of bridging Science, academics and research and utility, Murugappan explained, innovation is clearly a social process. Innovation is a complex design which comes up with a new idea and works for everyone. Innovators should connect collaborate and continue.

The grand evening of September 9, 2015, held at Kamarajar Arangam, ended with a Delicious vegetarian dinner . . .

Sunday, September 06, 2015

Raindropss – Revelations !

The evening, of Teacher’s day, celebrations and reverences were at its peak, at Hotel Savera, Chennai! When most of us were trying to remember our teachers on this auspicious day, there was a team that recognized a few educational institutions, which has made sure that the students know what their responsibilities are, as a student, as a child, as a national citizen and above all, as a wonderful human being. To honor a few of such institutions, the institutional heads, were honored with” Edupreneur Awards – 2015” !
Raindropss – a NGO founded by Mr.Aravind Jeyabal, took this initiative, to honor the teaching community, on this great day.The event hosted at Hotel Savera, by the team of Raindropss, with their Brand Ambassador Mrs.Rahainah Shekar – Musician and a more of well wishers. The evening was headed by His Excellency Dr.Rosaiah – Governor of Tamil Nadu, Justice Dr.Jyothimani.P – Judician Member, National Green Tribunal, Nawab Mohammed Abdul Ali – Prince of Arcot, Dr.Sultan Ahammed Ismail – Father of Vermiculture & Director, Eco Science Research foundation and Thiru APJMJ Sheik Saleem – Grand Son of Dr.A.P.J.Abdul Kalam. The evening also marked , to have a tribute, to the Missile man of India – Dr.Kalam – whose soul rested in peace a few weeks ago!
When the clock ticked 06.30pm IST, the gracious entry of His excellency was witnessed by every one in the hall, indicating the start of the event. Mr.Aravind welcomed the august gathering, showing his high respects and reverence to the teachers, on this grand day, and inaugurated the first edition of ‘Edupreneurs Award” the first edition by Raindropss, this day. His Excellency gave away the awards to, Ms.YGP Rajyalaksmi – Founder and Chair of PSBB group of schools was honored with a Lifetime Achievement award! Dr. V.Raju - Vice Chancellor VIT University, Shri Sridharan – Chancellor , Kalasilangam University, Shri Ashok Vargeese – Director, Hindusthan University, Dr.Lakshmana Prabhu -  Co Chair man, PSNA College of Technology,  Dr.Mariazeena Jhonson – Managing Director, Sathyabama University, Shri Velmurugan – CEO, Vellamal Institutions, Ms.Anusha Ravi – CEO, Park Institutions, Dr.Krishna Kumar – CEO & Secretary, Nehru Group of institutions, Dr.Karunanithi – Chairman, Vivekanandha Group of Institutions, Thiru Muralidaran – Chairman, Ethiraj College for women, And Dr.Periyasamy – Chairman Kongunadu Group of Instituions were honored with Edupreneur Awards 2015!
Ms.Rahainah Shekar gave away the presidential address in which she was mentioning about the rich legacy that India has got interms of knowledge and wisdom. India with 110 universities and about 37000 odd colleges, elusively striving to maintain the quality and standard of education on a global level despite us facing tough time in the field of education where education is considered as a matter of getting a degree alone. Sad state of affairs is that the public holds the teachers for student learning and student’s responsibility, as well. She appreciated the efforts of Raindropss in identifying, the best of the institutions and recognizes them for the service they do!  She also mentioned that she was proud to be a part of the projects, raindrops have launched so far.
Dr.Ismail, heartily appreciated the brain child of Raindropss – Edupreneur Award – 2015 and appreciated Raindropss team as a whole for such a wonderful initiative. When most of us were aware of the corporate social Responsibility – CSR , Raindropss had also innovatively brought in the concept of Student Social Responsibility and had the infotainment idea to create social awareness. Dr.Ismail also, fondly remembered that , on 25th November 1974,  started his career as a teacher, and mentioned that it is indeed a special privilege for him to be on the dias, sharing the stage with His Excellency!
Justice Jyothimani, in his speech mentioned his heartening appreciation to Raindropss for their perfect use of information technology in the path of infotainment, creating social awareness through theme songs, short films and related projects. He envisioned that the country would be facing two major problems at the IT front and at the environment front. He emphasized that it is upto the moral responsibility of the teachers to educate the youth to refrain themselves from the negative usage of IT as, misuse of Science is a Crime ! Secondly, he emphasized on the apparent proofs that we see , for the global warming. Those proofs are nothing but the evidences to show that Nature is pouncing on the human kind for ill treating her. He strongly believed that it must be from the youngsters, the responsibility should arise and protect the environment and nature and waterbodies.
Prince of arcot, His Highness Nawab Mohammed Abdul Ali Sahebh, congratulated Raindropss as they, as a team , serve to GOD , by serving Humanity. He mentioned that In Islamic tradition, during their regular prayers, every man would pray to the Most Merciful – God, to forgive the sins of his parents and teachers! And, that said how reverent the teachers and parents are. He emphasized on framing a curriculum of peace based education that strives to restore the nation suffering from terrorism, religious disharmony, communal clashes etc. India being a cradle of civilization and rich cultural heritage should make attempts to show us educated in terms of dignity and decency in private and public life. He appealed to the teachers to teach the respect for nationalism, communalism for national harmony, and enlighten the kids about the quality based, value based and peace based Education and its importance.
His Excellency – The Governor of TamilNadu – eulogized Raindropss’ service to the society and the brain child of Raindropss – Edupreneur Awards 2015! He accentuated upon the research and development field in India, and described education as a key to nurture human values, build entrepreneurship trait, dynamism, self confidence and courage, asses and address problems, innovatively, on a global levels,  plan and achieve goals by risk taking and in time bound manners! He heightened the importance of glueing academics and research and the real time applications. The interdisciplinary research is the need of the hour. He envisioned having more centres of excellence, more international linkages to showcase the Research and development of the Nation.  The nation needs more researchers and scientists and teachers need to commit themselves in achieving this goal for the nation, said the Governor, as his concluding remark.
The Award winners shared their success story during the latter half of the event and it was indeed blissful to know the paths that they have travelled so far, to reach greater heights. A special mention, to the anchor, who had made sure that the timing was extremely perfect, to start and finish with!
Overall, it was an awesome show, by team Raindropss, and let us all join to wish that their newly born child Hit atleast a century of editions !
Raindropss – Revelations