Donkey Milk Millionaire and Buttercupp

A young man who found luck with the donkey milk business, a couple who quit high-paying jobs in the US to sell cupcakes in Ahmedabad, an NGO rehabilitating girls from red-light districts, and seven engineers-turned-farmers are all part of this newsletter

Rashmi Pratap
New Update
Donkey Milk Millionaire and Buttercupp

Donkey Milk Millionaire and Buttercupp

Dear Reader,

Egyptian queen Cleopatra bathed with it. Hippocrates, the father of medicine, is said to have prescribed it for fevers, infections and liver problems. Young children and infants in Italy are now consuming it. And a 23-year-old farmer in Patan, Gujarat is earning Rs 16 lakh per month from it. This storehouse of nutrients (and money) is donkey milk!

When Dhiren A Solanki did not get any permanent appointment after clearing many government teacher job examinations, he decided to become an entrepreneur. His life took a new turn when his father saw a video from South India where a farmer was selling milk from the Halari donkey breed, native to the Saurashtra region in Gujarat.

Dhiren told me he set up his farm behind his house last year and bought donkeys from a local trader. In just about a year, he has built a successful business of donkey milk powder, which is exported at Rs 63,000 per kg to Malaysia, China, and other countries. How Dhiren did it in such a short period and his plans to set up his freeze-drying plant are all part of the story. Do read it, because this is an interesting one!

My colleague Aruna also wrote a story from Gujarat. She spoke to Amar and Darshini Patel who quit their high-paying jobs in the US to sell cupcakes in Ahmedabad! They followed their hearts to start Buttercupp, a cupcake shop in Ahmedabad. Buttercupp and the Patels have carved out a niche for themselves in the crowded market and now clock over Rs 6 lakh in monthly revenues.

From Kolkata, my colleague Partho wrote a heartwarming story about girls saved from human trafficking and prostitution.  NGO Vihaan, which works at the grassroots level, rescues and rehabilitates girls from Sonagachi, Chetla-Kalighat, and other red-light areas and provides them with training and dignified livelihood opportunities.

They are now working in banking and financial services, hospitality and farming sectors and some have also turned entrepreneurs. They are moving towards a brighter future, leaving behind the dark lanes where they were born.

With a growing awareness of living sustainably and eating healthy, many techies are quitting jobs to take up farming. My colleague US Anu has put together an interesting piece on seven techies who engineered farming success stories. Engineering education enables them to replicate technical knowledge on the farms to cut costs, enhance crop yield and help other farmers. 

And our Sunday feature is on five centuries-old lakes of Maharashtra full of water even today.

Happy Reading!    





This Gujarat man earns Rs 16 lakh per month from donkey milk business


Couple quits high-paying jobs in US to sell cupcakes in Ahmedabad


How girls in Kolkata’s red-light districts are moving towards a bright future


Seven techies who engineered farming success stories