Grilled Fish Dorado. Photo: Leithan Partnership t/a The Picture Pantry / Alamy Stock Photo
Rupchanda, Koi, Pulli Motha, Phas… this is an inventory of fresh fish that reads like an encyclopedia of regional and seasonal varieties from across India. Fill your virtual cart with cranberry rum spiced pork chops, chorizo burger patties, Guntur mutton pickle and other curated meats and deli products thanks to these brands that are changing how we shop for meat. And the inventory is far larger than the standard chicken and mutton cuts.
While the pandemic might have led to a surge in the online food businesses, a clutch of new brands focusing on provenance, smart logistics, a reliable cold chain and a sustainable approach to sourcing have been slowly but surely impacting the meat and fish that we consume. Here is a look at the six e-commerce ventures that are changing how we look at our daily protein.
Where to order seasonal seafood and fresh meat
Delivery: Across India and UAE
In the five years since it started, this Bengaluru-based online fish and meat retailer has come a long way, extending its reach across the country as well as the UAE. Their USP is simple—to provide customers with fresh, antibiotic and chemical-free products. In keeping with this they source their produce directly from fishermen and farms and deliver to customers through an AI powered supply chain that cuts down time taken in transportation from the source to the end user. proper packaging and handling ensures that the fish or meat that you get is perfectly preserved. The website lists the products as per availability and as the day progresses, the inventory changes or reduces based on the orders. Finally, an added plus is the focus on regional varieties of fish from Bengal, Kerala and other parts of coastal india, seasonal specialities as well as game birds and country fowl, and all at affordable price points.
Best for: local varieties of fish and free-range poultry. Website
Delivery: Across India
Started in 2018, this Gurugram-headquartered fish and seafood startup began its operations in Kolkata. This was a trial by fire in a city which takes its piscine love very, very seriously, Jalongi rose to the occasion and still regards the city as its most competitive market. Spurred by the pandemic demand, the company has fast-tracked its expansion plans and is now delivering in major metros including Delhi NCR, Hyderabad, Bengaluru, Mumbai and Pune. Their focus is simple: fresh fish and seafood sourced directly from trusted suppliers and an effective network of logistics. Apart from popular varieties, there are plenty of local variants that come whole, cut in pieces and also as per recipe specs. Take for example, the Kolkata Bhetki cut into narrow strips for fish finger preparation. The fish comes pre-washed in potable water and is ready for the pan. They also have a range of marinated fish dishes like a patrani macchi or a paturi as well as ready to cook items like prawns stuffed in cabbage leaves.
Best for: Bengali fish varieties like Bhetki, Hilsa and Pabda and their Mom’s Magic range of ready-to-cook seafood. Website
Delivery: Hyderabad and Chennai
From ready-to-cook Karuveppilai Chicken to a spicy Guntur mutton pickle, this Chennai-based meat and seafood retailer is much more than just that. From a range of marinades, meat and fish masalas and pickles to seafood, mutton, chicken and eggs, this online delivery service is a one-stop shop for meat lovers. Customised to palate of its local markets and with a select curation of seafood varieties consumed in the region, their promise remains fresh antibiotic-free products and a 120 minute delivery guarantee.
Best for: RTC dishes like Pichu Potta Kozhi and their meat and prawn pickles. Website
Delivery: Across India
The big daddy among the meat and seafood tech startups, Licious follows the farm-to-fork model with ownership over all aspects of supply and cold chain and also positions itself in the gourmet category. The Bengaluru-based company has an extensive repertoire of fresh seafood, meat and fish as well as cold cuts, kebabs, meat-based spreads, RTC dishes and more. High quality packaging as well as their own food processing facilities allow the brand to stay on top of the game. With a pan-India presence and the assurance of hygiene and freshness and a 2-hour delivery, Licious has attracted a large customer base.
Best for: Lucknow mutton galouti kebab, a wide range of mutton cuts (goat and lamb) and flavoured meat, poultry and seafood spreads. Website
Delivery: Gurugram, Mumbai, Delhi and Bengaluru
Think belgian pork chops, grass-fed buffalo steaks, lamb racks from Australia and American butterball turkeys, a salmon sashimi block… Meatigo offers all this and more. This Gurugram-based startup offers indian customers a range of imported and high quality local meat sans hormones, antibiotics or chemicals. Their deli selection is extensive and includes everything from fresh local hams to Italian prosciutto. Fry up their burger patties or meatballs for a quick fix meal or impress your guests by cooking up marinated products like Zaatar Chicken Middle Eastern Kebabs or a whole spatchcocked chicken in honey mustard,
Best for: Cold cuts and imported meats. Website
Delivery: Delhi NCR, Chandigarh, Mohali, Panchkula and Jaipur
Delivering across Delhi NCR, Chandigarh and Jaipur, this company prioritizes freshness and sources chemical-free seafood, poultry and meat products for you. From fresh Atlantic salmon to blue crabs and the Bengali Katla, this is a collection of greatest hits in seafood. Their chicken is sourced from quality farms which follow the best practices for rearing birds. They also have a section of speciality poultry products which include fresh duck, quail and turkey. Like many of its competitors, Zappfresh also targets the younger demographic by offering a range of ready to cook products as well as value-for-money party packs.
Best for: Ready to Eat products like Chapli kebabs, and breaded chicken and fish snacks. Website