Mamaprenista Pallavi Pande on Her Sustainable Brand, Dtocs


Hi Pallavi! Please share a brief introduction about yourself and your business:

I’m Pallavi Pande, a mompreneur championing a sustainable brand, Dtocs, which are palm leaf tableware reshaping the world one palm leaf plate at a time. At Dtocs, I rescue fallen palm leaves in India to give them one more use and make sustainable single-use tableware from them for homes and events. Balancing the scales of income and impact with an eco-warrior’s heart, you’ll catch me swirling in a Zumba class or savoring fine wine when I’m off duty. I am all for People, Planet, and Parties! Join us in our mission to dine sustainably without compromising on style or quality.

An inspiring mission! So Pallavi, what excites you about being an Entreprenista League member?

Being an Entreprenista League member excited me on multiple fronts. It’s a congregation of driven, dynamic women who are reshaping the business landscape. The collaborative spirit, boundless opportunities for networking, and the shared wisdom from diverse industries are invaluable. Each interaction is a chance to learn, grow, and potentially collaborate. In this league, I feel both supported and inspired, and that’s a powerful combination for any entrepreneur.

What was the inspiration behind starting Dtocs?

Moved by the environmental impact of single-use paper and plastic disposables used at homes and events, I started Dtocs Palm Leaf Tableware brand. Inspired by India’s timeless tradition of dining on banana leaves, I’ve brought this beautiful concept and experience to the global table with sustainable palm leaf tableware. With Dtocs, it’s more than just tableware; it’s a return to nature and a conscious healthier choice of better alternatives to the available single-use disposables for our planet.

Pallavi with Dtocs: palm leaf tableware.

What was your background before starting your own business?

Before diving into entrepreneurship, I was deeply immersed in the logistics sector, specializing in inventorying and warehousing for a reputable company. My expertise in navigating supply chains and facilitating product movement across borders provided me with a robust foundation. It was during this time, amidst the intricacies of logistics, that I had my “Aha” moment, identifying the perfect product that resonated with my values. That was the genesis of my sustainable products and brand journey, transforming the experience of eating Indian food on leaves into a tangible reality.

Did you always know you wanted to be an entrepreneur?

No, I didn’t always envision myself as an entrepreneur. My roots in logistics and supply chain initially directed me towards a more traditional path. However, as I delved deeper into the intricacies of product movement and global markets, I began to see gaps and opportunities. When I stumbled upon the concept behind Dtocs Palm Leaf Tableware, something clicked. What started as a mere idea soon became an undeniable passion, urging me to venture into the entrepreneurial world and create a brand that aligned with my values and vision for a more sustainable future.

Take us back to when you first launched your business, what was your marketing strategy to get the word out and did it go as planned?

When launching Dtocs Palm Leaf Tableware, our strategy was rooted in eco-conscious storytelling, emphasizing the bridge between India’s dining tradition and modern sustainable choices. We utilized organic social media, partnered with genuine eco-advocates, and collaborated with green cafes to amplify our message. Like many startups, we faced challenges: not all partnerships met expectations, and shifting restaurants from conventional disposables took time. Yet, challenges sharpened our focus. Taking feedback to heart, we fine-tuned our approach, establishing Dtocs as a hallmark of sustainable dining and cultural richness.

What is the biggest challenge you have encountered along the way and what did you learn from it?

Dtocs Palm Leaf Tableware grappled with entrenched habits favoring cheap, single-use disposables. Introducing our eco-friendly, culturally inspired tableware required more than promotion; it demanded education on its environmental benefits and aesthetic appeal. We learned to value resilience, consumer education, and continuous feedback. Our journey highlighted that success in sustainable business isn’t just about product innovation but reshaping consumer habits and perspectives.

What is the accomplishment you are the most proud of to date?

The accomplishment I hold dearest with Dtocs Palm Leaf Tableware is not just the widespread adoption of our products, but the perceptible shift in mindset we’ve inspired. Beyond sales and brand growth, it’s the countless individuals and businesses that now prioritize eco-friendly, culturally rich alternatives over single-use disposables. Seeing our tableware not only gracing dining tables but also sparking conversations about sustainability and cultural appreciation makes me incredibly proud. Dtocs hasn’t just sold plates; we’ve cultivated a community passionate about a more mindful and sustainable future.

What’s a piece of advice you can share that you wish you’d known when you first started your Entreprenista journey?

At Dtocs, we’re as passionate about work/life balance as we are about our sustainable tableware. Why? Because burnt-out humans can’t save the planet! Quick Dtocs Tips for Balance with a Dash of Fun: Boundaries are BFFs: Work time is work time. Chill time is for that new Netflix series. Embrace Self-Care: From bubble baths to dance-offs, find what makes you tick! Organize Like a Pro: Got tasks? There’s an app for that. Keep work neat so that life can be sweet. Delegate to Elevate: Can’t do it all? Pass the ball! Stay Social: Swap work tales for cocktail tales with pals. Remember, at Dtocs, we believe in crafting a balanced plate for our meals and our lives!

You have lots to celebrate! What have you achieved recently that you’d like to celebrate with our community?

Embarking on the Dtocs adventure has been enlightening, and if there’s a golden nugget I wish I’d grasped at the outset, it’s this: “Perfection is the enemy of progress.” In our initial zeal to craft the perfect sustainable tableware, we sometimes overlooked the value of iteration. Instead of waiting for the flawless product, it’s more productive to launch, learn from real-world feedback, and refine. Every hiccup, feedback, and twist in the journey adds layers to your entrepreneurial story. So, to all budding Entreprenistas: Start, adapt, and evolve. The journey itself perfects the destination!

What’s next for your business? What can we expect to see over the next few years?

Dtocs Palm Leaf Tableware has big plans ahead! Here’s a quick peek: New Eco-Products: Expanding our sustainable dining range. Going Global: Taking Dtocs to tables worldwide. Educate & Engage: Launching eco-living workshops and events. Tech Touch: Enhancing your shopping experience with tech. Greening Our Chain: Making our entire process even greener. Stay tuned! The future at Dtocs is all about growth, innovation, and sustainability.

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