Making chaku (molasses) is my family business. Even my great-grandfather was in it. I grew up working in family business with my father and grandfather during my childhood and teenage years. I don’t remember the exact date but when my grandfather died around 1965, we stopped the business and moved to Kalimati. Our family started some other business.
But in 2004, I began to have second thoughts. Why don’t I continue my family’s legacy of chaku-making in Tokha, I questioned myself? I then convinced myself to restart the business under a new name. Now I make chaku throughout the year. Everyone knows my company as ‘Bhai Lal Chaku’ and my chaku is famous as far afield as Banepa.
Annually, we purchase around five tons of brown sugar, the raw material. The brown sugar costs us around Rs 70 a kilo while we sell our chaku to wholesalers at Rs 140 a kilo. The Nepali month of Magh ( January-February) is important for us. Each season, we make around Rs 100,000 in net profit. Chaku production for Magh starts three months earlier. Right now, I have 14 people working in my factory.