An interesting story on Malaysia’s own BABA’S curry and spice brand that you did not know

Some may have already known that BABA’S is a Malaysian brand while some others have always thought that BABA’S is a brand imported internationally.

According to a Tweet by Richard Ker, not many people actually knew this super reliable curry powder brand is Malaysian!

Let’s dive into the story behind the 45-year-old Malaysian spices and curry brand.

Credit: AWS

It started small by selling out of a small van to now owning a Malaysian spice and curry powder empire

In the late 70s (1977), a young man in his 30s put all his life savings into a van. R Pagalavan started off his business by selling cooking essentials to customers in the Klang Valley off of his van.

He brought his mobile sundry shop to residential areas twice a month, selling products from rice to spices and condiments. Many – especially housewives – loved his products and eagerly waited for his van to come around their areas.

Credit: BABA’S/Facebook

Another quirky feature that made his small business a popular one was his buku 555 membership. He accepted credit terms from the housewives to ease the payment process for these women. 

If customers requested some other products that he didn’t have, he would make sure to cater to them sooner or later. He also scouts for the best quality ingredients and sells them for affordable prices.

Furthermore, his customers are the main reason he invented a special blend of curry powder that catered to his multiracial customers. He developed the blend through trial and error, and with help and feedback from his regulars as well.

With incessant effort and a passion to serve only the best to his customers, the curry powder soon became his best-seller! The BABA’S van soon evolved into the BABA’S brand.

Sky rocket demands came in that forced him to work 7 days a week with a 4-day production time and 3-day selling time. The one special curry blend then became two different blends specifically developed for meat and seafood respectively.

Fast forward to today, BABA’S has around 30 products ranging from Masala Mixes, Pure Spice Powders, Pure Flour, and Staple Food Mixes, to Snack and Sweet Mixes, that can be found on almost every retail shelf nationwide.

They’re not just popular nationwide, but globally too

Being Malaysia’s leading curry powder and spice brand (they have 60% of the Malaysian spice market) now, recent studies have shown that at least one in three main meals consumed by Malaysians daily has at least one product from the BABA’S range.

BABA’s is not only seen in almost every Malaysian kitchen today, but the product is also available internationally. BABA’S can be found in other foreign countries around the world.

According to Richard Ker, their brand can be found everywhere. There are even BABA’S products in a store in Ottawa, Canada.

Besides being halal-certified, BABA’S range of products are made of the finest quality ingredients from around the world and are truly vegetarian recipes.

Credit: BABA’S/ Facebook

A couple of companies partnered up with BABA’s such asAir Asia, Thermomix, Tabung Haji, TGV and more to expand their business further.

It all started with a humble man selling his spice products from his small van that now owns a successful business. An inspiring story we could say.

Source: TRP

Photo Credit: Vaishali’s Superstore/ Facebook


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