Mumbai's iconic dabbawalas bye-bye to cycles for more efficient delivery system

Motorbikes also help conserve physical energy, say the dabbawalas. 

Mumbai's iconic dabbawalas bye-bye to cycles for more efficient delivery system

MUMBAI: A change is brewing in the service and supply chain of Mumbai's dabbawalas. The lifeline of Maximum City, dabbawalas are now slowly shifting to motorbikes from the traditional cycles for more efficiency and on-time hot lunch.

The traditional cycles balances can carry up to 60 dabbas or lunch boxes. But bikes can balance nearly 150 dabbas at a time. More lunch boxes in one trip translate into more money.

Motorbikes also help conserve physical energy, say the dabbawalas. It also helps in quick parking, saving time.

But not all dabbawalas have given up their cycles. There are several routes in Mumbai that only allow cycles. It also remains the most efficient mode of transport during a traffic jam.

Mumbai's iconic dabbawalas have been in action for more than 125 years now, delivering about 1 lakh lunches everyday to office goers, school children, and students.

Their impressive accuracy earned them a six sigma quality certificate and a global business fan club, which includes Prince Charles and Richard Branson. Their unique management and operational models have become subjects of management study beyond textbooks for global business schools.

The dabbawalas recently launched their parcel courier system, where along with the daily tiffin, one can hand over a parcel or two to be couriered to its destination in the city within a day.

With agency inputs

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