Online Food Industry Is Seeing A Positive Growth In Number Of Young Women Entrepreneurs

Ms. Silky Singh, CEO & CTO, RipseyWomen entrepreneurship has hit a tipping point. The world is bursting with bold stories of young women entrepreneurs taking risks to grow their business. Almost a century back, women would gather and demonstrate their dread against the restrictive dogmas of the society. But things are not the same now. In fact, there is a drastic change. Someone has appropriately said, “there is no force more powerful than a woman determined to rise”.

Breaking the stereotypes, women are taking major role in all kinds of industries. Women have always been associated with food but only in the domestic confines. Be it grocery, managing meals and anything related to food and health, there is always a woman behind the planning and decision. Women have finally stepped out of their kitchens and willingly becoming a part of booming food industry. Many young and dynamic women entrepreneurs are getting attracted to the online food industry and their story is both inspiring and empowering. The online food industry surely has the power to lead the next phase of gender equality.

Rapidly Growing Online Food Industry
When we talk about e-commerce space, online food industry has witnessed fast paced development. This sector has revolutionised the entire idea of food as consumers like us have the privilege to choose from a variety of cuisines and get it delivered anytime, anywhere. Online food industry has been growing at an astounding speed and there are several reasons for the same. The most important being, flexible investment. In this sector, ideas are many and one can start the business with least to vast investment. This is one of the vital reasons of women being attracted to the online food industry. It has given a chance to many women to show their skills to the world and get recognised for the same.
Women and Food
The relationship of women and food is of course, known to all and something that cannot be defined. This relationship has come miles beyond cooking. Women, especially in India, have always been indulged in unpaid work i.e. household chores which, undoubtedly, is tougher than many professions. Many women have left their full-time secured jobs to follow their passion for food. Women have established a brand name of their own in food and beverage industry like Rashmi Daga, ShilarnaVaze, Mira Jhala, just to name a few.

Be it online tiffin service, food vlogging, healthy meals start up, home cooked meals in different cuisines, women are shining everywhere. It has helped them challenge the so-called phrase, “a woman’s place is in the kitchen’’ and become a chef, vlogger or an entrepreneur.

Challenges Faced by Young Women Entrepreneurs
Setting up and maintaining a business is of course not easy as there are many challenges involved. Some of these challenges are common to both men and women and some are more significant to women entrepreneurs only. There is no doubt in the fact that online food industry is attracting number of young women entrepreneurs but like many other sectors, male dominance can be clearly witnessed here as well. Women often face many challenges due to negative gender stereotypes, societal perception that women lack entrepreneurship skills, financial constraints, smaller and less effective entrepreneurial networks.

There is a cultural assumption that entrepreneurship is a masculine activity which dissuade many women from considering entrepreneurship in the first place. Mentoring is a recognised necessity for both male and female entrepreneurs but the same is easily available to men and rarely found for women. Many women often drop the idea of starting their own business due to unavailability of mentors.

Pave the Way for Young Women Entrepreneurs
Food is a woman’s forte and food industry shall be easily accessible by young women who wish to make a career in this sector. Steps need to be taken to promote a positive attitude through role models and ambassadors, develop entrepreneurship skills through training programmes, facilitate access to financial instruments and awareness about the same, build entrepreneurial networks, promote work-life balance and access to social protection.

All About Women
Food is art and women are best artists in this industry.From IT to education, finance to art, retail to fashion, food to travel, women are making their presence felt like never. Women led online food ventures are reaching heights of success with some, even making history. The stories of these women have an undeniable multiplier effect in the growth story of young women entrepreneurs. We must create mentor networks of these successful women who are industry experts and inspire the aspiring. Let’s use the expertise and experience of these successful entrepreneurs to give shape to the innovative ideas of many struggling women.