In a world which seems to be functioning on plastic, Bengaluru based couple Arun and Jyoti Balachandran decided it was time for a change. Dustbins exist in every household today, and garbage bags have become a necessity. To counter the damage being done to the environment by the daily usage of garbage bags made of non-bio-degradable plastic, three years ago, Arun and Jyoti came up with the concept of eco-friendly garbage bags – GreenBug Bags.
The idea of eco-friendly bags came about when Arun wanted to look for an alternative to plastic garbage bags. Unable to find a less harmful alternative, he decided to make one of his own, using paper and starch. The initial hiccups were difficult to overcome. They found it difficult to make paper hold the waste, and after several tries, they were finally able to create bags strong enough to hold the contents, using minimum newspapers.
Apart from helping the nature by not using plastic, the couple also hired women from financially poor backgrounds, through a local NGO, to assist them in making the bags. This gave the women some skill and financial support to keep their families going. It took time and work to train the women to present a professional approach. The women were trained to make consistent products, using correct parameters.
The women were in dire need of financial support, and GreenBUG provided the money. These women used most of this income for their children’s education, to pay school fees, purchase textbooks and under the RTE program (Right to education), enroll them in better schools. Their customers are also very enthusiastic towards GreenBUG’s approach.
The problem with plastic starts right from manufacturing. From rivers to air, to human health, everything is affected due to the release of toxins. Plastic dumped on roads and in water bodies is consumed by land and marine animals, and disrupts their digestive system, often killing them.
GreenBUG has only grown since it started, and offers retail sales offline as well as online. It is a great way to do something beneficial for the environment, and there isn’t a big cost difference. The lesser plastic we use, the more we will be able to achieve our ‘greener’ earth mission.