After Grammys, Keralite entrepreneur's Karma Nuts finds a place in Oscars gift bag

Ganesh Nair

Karma Nuts, a brand of cashew snacks established in the US by Kerala-born entrepreneur Ganesh Nair, had hogged headlines when it made it to the gift bag of presenters and performers at the Grammys.

The product is again in the limelight now, as part of a gift bag for nominees at the Oscars.

All Oscar nominees this year got a luxurious swag bag valued at $140,000. Karma Nuts, one of the several items in the gift bag - ranging from high-end snacks to $15,600 four-night stay for two at a luxury resort - is priced at $9.49.

Hailing from a family that has been into cashew business for nine decades, Ganesh introduced a unique brand to the market by retaining the skin of cashew to add to its nutritive quality. It was a risky move, but the idea of shelled cashews hit the jackpot, becoming a healthy snack endorsed by nutritionists, clinicians, and now, the who’s who of the showbiz.

After working in major healthcare establishments in India and abroad, Ganesh joined his family business in cashew nuts. He realised that the tastier nutrient powerhouse cashew had no valued brands in the US, unlike its cousins almonds and pistachios, and established his brand in California in 2014.

The name ‘Karma’ was a homage to his family and his late father Rajendranathan Nair, a Gandhian and naturopath, who was a firm believer in the philosophy of Karma.

“I too believe in Karma in the sense that we need to focus on the action required of us at each moment. This inspiration is further reflected in our motto ‘Do Good. Eat Good. Feel Good.’ Karma Nuts was my attempt to bring together my expertise developed in corporate healthcare and my deep legacy,” Ganesh had told Onmanorama in an interview.

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