Tuesday, January 09, 2007

The Dabbawalla of Mumbai





Standing near one of the many train station exits around 11:30 a.m. every workday in Mumbai, you may witness a spectacular tradition.... have- lunch-box- will- travel ..... unfold before your very eyes. An estimated 200,000 lunches packed carefully, by mother or wife, in their distinguishable aluminum containers are transported throughout the city to workers eachday. The Dabbawallas some dressed in their traditional white kurtas and topi, pick up the lunches from home, deliver them to the workplace and then return the containers back home for another round the next day. This began when the British were unable to find suitable foods available on the streets in Mumbai. Hence, the Dabbawallas were created. Not a bad system-certainly keeps folks away from the fast food establishments and the foods from home are so much healthier for you!

10 comments:

wheresmymind said...

Not too dissimilar from all the consultants waiting for their lunches they've ordered in. I feel good about the fact that my friend is the 'ring leader' and organizer of about 15 different lunches ordered in from the 'burbs to downtown Boston :)

Tanna said...

Slow here...how does the lunch get matched to the right person or is that not part of the picture.

K & S said...

That is neat how your homemade lunch is delivered to you :)

Jann said...

Tanna-There are approximately 5000 people working in this network,constantly handing off the lunches which are well marked with addresses and names.Seldom is there a mix-up-

Katie said...

I've read about them in the past. Absolutely fascinating network of very efficient people.
Great pic's

Kristen said...

What a fascinating system!

Mimi said...

It's a wonderful system. Wish we had one here.

You know, those photos are so vivid, Jann, that I can hear the cacaphony of the streets here. Great post!

Brilynn said...

I love this story! Your blog always makes me want to travel.

Lydia said...

Just saw a documentary about this on the Travel Channel earlier this week. An amazing system.

henna Kalro said...

Its Dabbawalas not dabbawaias .