When on vacation to relax in the scenic beauty of the mountains, the only thing that disturbs our peace is the unnecessary plastic waste lying around. India generates around 3.5 million metric tons of plastic waste that goes straight to landfills, polluting our surroundings. This alarming issue disturbs all of us but how many of us can think of an appropriate solution? Well, doing extra to cover up our share, Zerocircle is here as a boon for minimizing the deadliest plastic waste generation in India. See for yourself and understand how minimizing plastic waste production on an individual level has become a hassle-free process!
- How badly plastic is affecting nature?
- Zerocircle: a solution to the rising plastic problem
- Zerocircle founder
- The journey of Zerocircle – From rags to riches!
- What impact does zerocircle have on nature?
- Frequently Asked Questions
How badly plastic is affecting nature?
Single-use plastics such as chip packets, biscuit wrappers, gift wraps, and even food-preserving film sheets have persisted in the environment for over a century. Even a plastic bag utilized for a mere 10-minute trip from the market to your home has haunted the Earth for a hundred years. As it begins decomposing, it adversely impacts various elements of nature. The breakdown of plastic into tiny toxic particles contaminates the water bodies and soil and affects the air quality as well.
In response to this issue, Neha Jain established Zerocircle as a contribution to solving the problem and preventing unnecessary plastic waste from reaching landfills.
Zerocircle: a solution to the rising plastic problem
Zerocircle is a sustainable packaging company that produces an alternative to plastic packaging. It uses seaweed as a raw material to create a better alternative to plastic packaging that is completely biodegradable, cost-effective, and durable. Currently, ZeroCircle’s alternative replaces LDPE (low-density polyethylene) and PP (polypropylene) types of plastic.
This Mumbai-based startup has signed up with some big companies to manufacture industrial packaging for them while unlocking the answers to climate change, food scarcity, sustainable packaging, saving marine lives and so much more. Zerocircle sources its raw material, seaweed from farming communities in the Indian coastal states of Gujarat, Maharashtra, and Tamil Nadu.
Zerocircle founder, Neha Jain is a 37-year-old entrepreneur having a bachelor’s degree in Journalism from Christ University, Bengaluru. Before starting her journey as Zerocircle founder, she worked with companies like Google and Aditya Birla Money in various roles and responsibilities. It was in 2018 that she left her job and decided to make something meaningful out of her life. After a deep research of 2 years, and several trials for finding a sustainable alternative, Neha founded her new-age sustainable baby, Zerocircle.
What was the idea behind launching the zerocircle?
A great incident is attached to owning a startup like zerocircle. One day while she was on the research period, she watched a documentary on seaweed that explained everything about how it could be used to reduce waste from everyday consumption. Upon digging some more, she came across the story of an old woman from the United States who had gone completely to zero waste.
All this raised her interest in the problem of climate change and the idea of exploring the potential of seaweed was her answer. She realized that the use of plastic would be impossible to eliminate on an individual level so with a ray of hope on finding a solution that would resurface the number of plastic waste on a mass level – she started Zerocircle
The journey of Zerocircle – From rags to riches!
After complete research and a clear direction, Neha narrowed her vision to seaweed. She approached Mumbai’s Institute of Chemical Technology’s Seaweed Research Department and met the marine biologist Dr. CRK Reddy, also known as the king of seaweed. She worked with him to get a clear picture of the execution of her idea and with trial and error, Neha and the team of Zerocircle developed some material that could be used for packaging sarees, clothes bags, or films for protecting food.
During the manufacturing process, the team made sure that their product breaks down into soil-friendly compounds, leaving no microplastics behind. They aimed at working with big sectors like healthcare, textiles, and packaged food producing units as it will help in creating a difference.
A secret mystery behind the name – ‘zero circle’
The idea behind starting the business was to inculcate zero carbon footprint and negative impact with the idea of promoting circular economy. So, she named her brainstormed business – Zerocircle!
What impact does zerocircle have on nature?
Zerocircle manufactured seaweed packaging is environment friendly as when you are done with the product, then just throw the wrapper in west waste and it will decompose without causing any harm to the environment. By chance,e if it slips inside the water bodies, then also there is nothing to worry about as it is marine degradable.
Their packaging is even safe for packing food, skincare, or hair care products. It does not release any harmful chemicals that might infect your food or skincare items. Neha launched the product only after rigorous tests at a personal level. A normal customer might not be able to identify the difference but it surely safeguards the plastic waste generation, contributing towards a greener and healthier environment.
Advantages of Seaweed in the ocean
The most attractive quality of seaweed is the speed at which it grows. It performs photosynthesis, emits oxygen and absorbs carbon dioxide but without consuming any of our resources. It does not need fresh water and fertilizers to grow, instead, sea water and sunlight are enough for it.
Another great advantage of seaweed is that along with carbon dioxide, it absorbs nitrogen and phosphorus which enter the ocean because of agricultural runoff.
Since Zerocircle was started right before the devastating hit of the global pandemic, it was difficult for Neha to operate online. It was like, somebody stopped her journey even before starting. But she did not let anything dull her dedication, so, as soon as things started getting back to normal, Neha began her struggle to search labs for the production.
Another challenge that stood tall in her way was locating a potential talent that could help her in the practical execution of her idea. As material science was new to the market, Neha had to struggle a bit before finding the appropriate team to launch Zerocircle.
But as it is said, all things fall into place at the right time and with the right amount of effort, so Neha also started climbing the ladder of success after 2 years of research and struggle. Zerocircle is still figuring out ways to eliminate plastic from the market but taking this bold step was more than enough to rely on the idea of an environment-friendly future. Mad4India appreciates the idea of Zerocircle and believes in their motive; we support more such budding young minds.
For more updates, visit their website.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is seaweed material more expensive than plastic?
Yes, as there is not much production of seaweed and therefore it is a bit more expensive than plastic.
Is seaweed strong enough and durable?
Yes, it is! Even though seaweed is bio-degradable, researchers have shown that it has ten times the tensile strength of polymers like plastic.
Can humans eat seaweed?
No, seaweed contains such fiber that the human-weed bacteria cannot break down. So, being a material that is hard to digest, it is advisable to avoid eating seaweed.
Give a read to a similar story of Diwakar Channappa, Who Left ISRO To Start Date Farming In Karnataka, Earns Double Today- Making 6 Lakhs Per Acre.