The country collects 36.5 million tonnes of waste every year and very little of it is recycled or recycled. This includes from plastic, cloth, glass, metal etc. to organic waste. In such a situation, it is the responsibility of all of us to try to reduce the amount of this waste to a minimum. For this, it is most important that we pay attention to the waste coming out of our homes and try to manage it properly as much as possible.
The second and best idea is to work at the commercial level. That means awesome from garbage. It is said that what is a ‘waste’ for someone in the world can be a ‘means’ for someone else. Like Mehul Shroff from Madhya Pradesh is doing. He is making eco-friendly fiber by processing the trunk of the banana tree. Similarly, there is a lot of garbage around us, using which you can start a business from small to large scale.
You don’t even need to work hard for business ideas. You just read this article of ours well because through this today we are telling you five sustainable business ideas, which can not only become your source of income but are also helpful in environmental protection.
1. Upcycled Furniture Business
Wood and plastic furniture is very common. But in the recent past, there has been an increase in the trend of ‘upcycled furniture’ among the people. By ‘upcycled furniture’ means any kind of waste to make tables, chairs, stools, cupboards etc. Many people use only old wooden window-doors or other furniture for this work. Due to this they do not have to buy new wood and old wood is also saved from going to waste.
Many people are making beautiful and attractive furniture by using ‘industrial waste’ like car, scooter, bike parts or waste drums and tires etc. Pradeep Jadhav, who runs his ‘upcycled furniture’ business in Pune, says he learned how to make new furniture out of tires or barrels through YouTube. His business has grown tremendously in the last three years and he has completed more than 500 orders till date.
He said that first of all you should collect this information that from where you can buy such waste at the least cost. Next, you should know what product you will be making from what and what tools you will need for this. After this you have to choose the place for the workshop.
You have to make initial investment in this business. But if you move slowly, you can earn good money.
2. Upcycled Home Decor Business
People change the look of their house on every festival or on special occasions. For this, they always need something different home decor. Therefore, you can also start a business of home decor related products. It is not necessary that you make this product from brand new raw material. Rather, you can use a lot of garbage around you for this purpose. For example, experiment with old glass or plastic bottles, art on old utensils to give them a different look or you can use old clothes.
Like Shikha Shah of Varanasi makes planters out of old plastic containers and hanging home decor from glass bottles. She also uses some electronic waste like keyboard etc. to make a diary cover and sometimes a pen stand. She told that initially she used to collect only glass bottles and paint them. Gradually people started liking his work and started getting orders. Now she makes decorations for people even from the oldest things kept in their homes.
He says that if someone wants to do this business then:
- They should be a little creative and at the same time, should have a desire to learn something new.
- First of all, make home decor products by upcycling the ‘waste’ things available around you.
- The quality of the products should be very good.
- Use social media to market them.
- Get people’s feedback on what they need that you can build.
There may be trouble in getting orders in the beginning, but if you keep working on your skills, then you will definitely get success.
3. Make products like bags, mats from polythene or polybags
It cannot happen that any kind of plastic does not come in the house of a common Indian. Even if we reduce single-use plastic, a lot of ration in the house comes packed in polythene itself. Especially that milk packets come out of homes every day. But most of this plastic reaches the garbage can only. But if someone wants, one can stop this waste from going into the environment. Yes, plastic is not only recycled but can also be recycled.
Mumbai-based Rita Maker says, “In 2016, I saw a video on Facebook in which a woman was making a mat out of Walmart shopping bags. That’s where I got the idea. I used to know how to crochet. So I collected all the polythene and plastic bags in the house and got to work.” Today she makes a variety of things like bags, mats and baskets. She says anyone can do this work. However, Rita does this work to a limited extent from her home.
But Nandan Bhat of Pune is manufacturing a variety of products by upcycling the wrappers of single use polythene, chips and biscuits etc. on a large scale. He has also set-up his own unit, where all the plastic is first washed and dried. These are then cut into thin strips, spun on a charkha and then fabric is prepared on handloom. From this ‘fabric’ of plastic, he makes things like bags, backpacks. Which cost in thousands.
So if you want to do business of ‘Utility Product Manufacturing’ then what better sustainable business than this.
4. Upcycling Old Clothes
This is such a work that you can start from home and that too with minimum investment. If you are an expert in making new things using old clothes in your home, then this task is easier for you. But even if you do not already know this work, you can still learn from YouTube videos. Delhi-based Siddhant Kumar is making different things just by upcycling old denim jeans and today his earnings are in crores.
Like her, Meenakshi Sharma is also running her own business by upcycling old clothes. She uses old clothes to make new products like bags, curtains, rugs. Today, she does not allow old and useless clothes not only from her own but also from other homes and big enterprises to go in the garbage. For the last 10 years, she has been preventing more than 200 kg of old-waste clothes from going to landfill every month. Also, she makes products that can be an alternative to plastic. Like large cloth carpets, table covers etc.
Also, to start this business, you should have skills in hand and lots of creative ideas in mind. First of all, you decorate your house by making new things from old clothes and then market it. If you do something different then your business will definitely go on.
5. Eco Friendly Crockery Business
We all know that you can make eco-friendly plates and bowls from the leaves of many trees. Apart from this, you can also make crockery from various types of agricultural waste such as sugarcane waste. In view of the increasing pollution due to plastic, the demand for eco-friendly crockery is increasing. So if you want to do sustainable business then this is a good field to work in.
Madhavi and Venugopal, who live in Hyderabad, have been making eco-friendly plates and bowls from sal and palash leaves for the past three years. The interesting thing is that he has planted Palash trees in his own fields. He has set up a small unit on the farm itself, where plates and bowls are made. Venu and Madhavi started marketing these eco-friendly, sustainable and natural plates from their own society. All the friends-relatives who used these plates in their events wrote about them on social media and thus they got a good recognition.
He says that the demand in this area will increase a lot as there is increasing awareness among the people. They like to order only eco friendly crockery for small and big events. Also, the government has been working on a plan to ban single use plastic for a long time. In such a situation, only eco-friendly crockery would be a better option for the people. Therefore, if someone wants to do a sustainable business, then one can move forward in this field as well.
Apart from these, you can also start a business of handmade soap, shampoo, recycled paper, diary, etc. There is no shortage of raw material in our country. All you need is the right ideas. So start working on your favorite idea from today itself and become a successful businessman.
Editing – G N Jha
Also read: Less investment, more profit: Start these five businesses from home