Addressing the rising demand for alternative packaging solutions, Anand Bodh and Arpit Dhupar launched Dharaksha Ecosolutions in 2020. This innovative Faridabad-based B2B startup transforms paddy straw stubble into environmentally-friendly packaging material, contributing to pollution reduction and the promotion of sustainable alternatives.
The founders’ mission, as explained by Dhupar, is to eradicate pollution sources and offer sustainable replacements. He emphasizes that everyone should have access to clean air, which shouldn’t be a privilege reserved for the affluent.
Also Read: Eco-Chic or Just a Gimmick? The Reality of Sustainable Fashion Exposed
Their commitment to tackling a critical environmental issue was inspired by a report from the Punjab Pollution Control Department that highlighted an alarming rise in field fire incidents due to stubble burning. Dharaksha Ecosolutions presents a viable solution that helps farmers dispose of stubble responsibly, thereby preventing detrimental stubble burning.
The innovative approach of Dharaksha involves the use of mycelium, a mushroom root, to decompose paddy straw and transform it into packaging materials. By culturing a mushroom species that uses stubble waste as a food source, the startup has created biodegradable packaging that decomposes within 60 days in standard soil and has a shelf life of over three years.
This eco-friendly alternative to plastic and thermocol is suitable for secondary packaging, providing protection during transit. In addition, these packaging materials do not absorb moisture and possess thermal resistance, fire retardance, water resistance, and anti-static properties. The startup is also planning to create thin-film plastics from mushroom metabolites, replacing MDF wood and offering a sustainable alternative to plastic bags.
Also Read: Sustainable Advertising in India: Responding to Climate Change Trends
To source the raw material, Dharaksha procures stubble from farmers through a network of aggregators. The stubble undergoes a processing journey of around 10 days, converting it into packaging material. With this, the startup aims to reduce stubble waste burning by 40% in the next six to seven years.
Funded by an initial investment from the founders, Dharaksha operates on a per-piece volumetric pricing model. The startup is currently capable of producing 20,000 pieces per month and has plans to significantly ramp up its production capacity by the end of the year.
Dharaksha’s innovation is a testament to the potential of sustainability in combating environmental challenges while offering viable business solutions.
This news is based on an article from YourStory.