This Independence Day, this startup is planting the seeds for a greener future with eco-friendly flags
Independence Day is of utmost importance to all of us. As the day nears, we see many people buying our national flag from shops or at traffic signals. In most cases, these flags are made using plastic sheets.
But as we all know, plastic has become one of the biggest threats to our environment. While people have come up with many eco-friendly alternatives to plastics, switching to these products is not easy as these products are usually priced on the higher side.
But making a difference this Independence Day is Bengaluru-based Seed Paper India, a startup that is taking the green route by making plantable flags from seed papers.
Speaking to NDTV about the initiative, Roshan Ray, Founder, Seed Paper India, said,
“Every event and occasion generate truckloads of waste. For instance, before Independence Day, you will see children selling flags at red lights and bus stops. But after the Independence Day, you will find same flags lying unattended on the roads. It is in 2017 when I gave a thought to the amount of waste generated and decided to replace to-be-waste with a plant.”
The seed flag is made from handmade paper, which uses discarded cotton fibres, and has tulsi seeds embedded in it.
Further, it is dyed using organic ink. A mixture of turmeric powder with food colour is used to get the saffron colour, spinach is used for the green colour, and blueberries for Ashoka Chakra’s blue colour.
These plantable flags are priced between Rs 5 and Rs 12, as it depends on the customisation, which means, embedding the company logo or a slogan, and the quality of flag.
The production of the flags is a five-step process, which includes the collection of waste clothes, and cutting them into suitable shapes and sizes through a rag chopping machine. Further, these pieces are then washed and ground to a fine pulp by using a machine.
Once the pulp is ready, it is poured into a tank, which mixes the pulp, and later poured into the vat where the tulsi seeds are added. After this, seed papers are obtained, which are left for five to seven days for natural dyeing. It is later cut into specific shapes and sizes as per the requirement.
However, this isn’t the first time the startup has ventured into an eco-friendly alternative. According to The New Indian Express, during this year’s Republic Day, Seed Paper India collaborated with The Sathya Sai Orphanage Trust and launched two projects, which were seed flags and seed balls. It was done in association with the Kerala government.
The flags were manufactured in the same process as mentioned above whereas the seed balls were made of teak wood, marigold, sunflower, basil, and neem.
(Edited by Megha Reddy)