Mumbai Dabbawala Perfect Overview

mumbai dabbawala carrying tiffins

The Mumbai Dabbawala delivers lunch boxes of home cooked food for the last 125 yrs and that too with a Six Sigma Precision. It has become a part of the Mumbai Culture over these years. With time, their popularity have only grown manifolds because of the  efficiency, demeanor and quality service that they have been providing.

Mumbai Dabbawala

Who are the Dabbawala?

Dabbawala are a set of people specially in Mumbai who collects the home cooked food in tiffin box from the houses of office-goers and deliver it at their clients workplace before lunch. They deliver the tiffin boxes using bicycles, local trains and carts.

How did it started?

About 125 yrs ago, a parsi banker wanted to have home cooked food delivered regularly at work and this gave birth to the first ever Dabbawala. Soon, the idea was welcomed and slowly it became a part of this beautiful city’s lifestyle. Today, more than 1 lakh people use the service of these Dabbawalas.

How good are they at delivering the tiffins?

If we say that Logistics giants like FedEx are studying their delivery process, then that can give you a little insight of their efficiency. The Dabbawalas claim that they almost never make a mistake in delivering the right tiffin to the right person. A rough estimate of their mistake is approximated to around 1 in 2 months, which is  like 1 error in 6 million transactions. For the very fact, they are also recognized as  having a Six Sigma Accuracy in their delivery system.

Their Popularity and Fame

The prestigious IIM Ahmedabad and the Harvard Business School have featured case study on the Dabbawalas for their superb skills. Recently, Richard Branson of the Virgin Group visited them and even delivered a Dabba with them. How cool is that !!
In addition, The famous Bollywood movie ‘Lunch Box’ released in 2013 also featured the mumbai dabbawala. Further, the corporate world has also started to admire their brilliance.  The modern E-Commerce companies like Flipkart  have started moves to grow their business by clubbing with the Dabbawalas.

A Short Mumbai Dabbawala Film

Contact Details

Mumbai Dabbawala Association
Navprabhat Chambers, 3rd Floor,
Opposite Waman Hari Pethe Jewellers,
Ranade Road, Dadar West,
Mumbai – 400028
Official Site : http://mumbaidabbawala.in
Email: info@mumbaidabbawala.in
Intro Image Credit: By Joe Zachs from Pune, India – Six Sigma holders, CC BY 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=4278525