8 Eco-Entrepreneurs Fighting Plastic Pollution in India

On Earth Day 2024, we are excited to share startups that are turning plastic pollution in India into new ways to help our planet. TechnoServe’s Greenr Sustainability Accelerator is proud to help them increase their impact.

Winner of EarthDay 2024 poster competition for the theme Planet vs. Plastics organized by earthday.org. Part of a blog post on plastic pollution.

Once hailed as the environment’s hero, a synthetic alternative to natural resources like ivory and tortoiseshell, among others, plastic has now become a major environmental villain. Environmentally speaking, it’s one of the greatest paradoxes of our times. Qualities like its durability and versatility have also led to its persistence in landfills and our oceans, causing immense harm now and into the future.

While plastic revolutionized industries and fueled advancements, indiscriminate use and ineffective waste management systems have brought us to a point where we need to make some hard choices between plastics and the planet.  

Plastic Pollution by the Numbers

Recent statistics paint a grim picture:

It’s clear that we need to take immediate action.

This Earth Day, we are highlighting green entrepreneurs from India who are rising to the challenge by offering innovative solutions to reduce plastic pollution and waste.

Supported by programs like TechnoServe’s Greenr Sustainability Accelerator, these startups are developing innovative solutions to tackle plastic pollution. Supported by the IKEA Foundation and Visa Foundation, our aim is to scale up exceptional green startups by linking them to knowledge, capital, and markets. Our model offers highly experienced strategic advisors who work to support deserving startups without any equity dilution and no program participation fees. 

Meet the Entrepreneurs

Zerund: Building a Sustainable Future with Innovative Bricks


  • Traditional red brick production is harmful to the environment, contributing to CO2 emissions and damaging/replacing fertile agricultural land.
  • Plastic waste is a growing global problem, causing pollution and posing health risks.


Zerund tackles these issues through their revolutionary brick:

  • Sustainable materials:  Zerund makes bricks from 70% recycled waste materials like fly ash and plastic waste, reducing reliance on virgin resources.
  • Eco-friendly benefits: Their brick production requires less energy compared to red bricks, minimizing CO2 emissions and environmental impact.
  • Superior properties: These bricks are lightweight and boast high strength, low water absorption, and excellent insulation, offering superior building performance.


Zerund annually processes over 10,000 tons of waste materials, transforming plastic waste into a valuable building resource. The superior insulation properties of their bricks translate to energy savings in buildings and reduced CO2 emissions. Buildings constructed with Zerund Bricks are close to 15-20% more cost-effective compared to traditional red brick structures.

EcoKaari: Your Pack of Chips, Now a Tote Bag


  • Traditional crafts are often overlooked in the modern world, leading to the loss of cultural heritage and economic opportunities for artisans, particularly women and youth from underprivileged backgrounds. 
  • Plastic pollution is a major environmental threat, causing harm to wildlife and ecosystems.


Life is all about making choices (mostly the right ones). Someone throws a packet of chips in the bin (or worse, out on the streets), EcoKaari upcycles them to design some unique products. 

  • Upcycling: The company transforms waste plastic into beautiful fabrics using traditional Indian techniques like Charkha and Handloom.
  • Empowerment: EcoKaari empowers women and youth from underprivileged backgrounds by providing them with skill development and livelihood opportunities.
  • Sustainable Practices: The company prioritizes responsible waste management throughout their production process, minimizing water usage and repurposing any fabric scraps.
  • Lifetime Care: EcoKaari offers free repairs on their products and takes back used items for responsible disposal or repurposing, extending their lifespan.


EcoKaari creates a ripple effect of positive change. It diverts plastic waste from landfills, creates sustainable jobs for artisans, and inspires consumers to make eco-conscious choices. This holistic, “closing the loop” philosophy ensures minimal waste and a responsible product lifecycle.

TGP Bioplastics: ‘Packing’ A Sustainable Punch


  • Even the most environment-friendly brands struggle with eco-friendly packaging. Eco-friendly plastic packaging alternatives are costly or adulterated, which becomes an adoption barrier for customers and industries. 
  • Low-carbon, affordable, and compostable plastics are not amply available in India. Reliance on imported compostable materials is expensive, thereby limiting accessibility.


TGP Bioplastics addresses these issues by developing:

  • Commercially viable compostable plastic: TGP Bioplastics has produced one of the first local, commercially viable compostable plastics in India. This reduces dependence on imports and ensures wider availability. 
  • Good for the environment products: They offer affordable, low-GHG emission bioplastic granules for manufacturing various packaging products like carry bags, garbage bags, and e-commerce packaging.
  • Unique biomaterials for strength: Compostable materials made from corn starch ensure product durability without compromise. 


TGP has commercialized a plastic alternative that has the same strength as conventional plastic while lowering the carbon footprint by up to 40%, cost by 5-20%, and increasing plant-based content by more than 40-50%. It has been tested for its toxicity and approved by the Government of India for commercialization in India.

RUR Greenlife: Reducing, Reusing, Recycling


  • Urban cities have a centralized approach to managing waste, which leads to greenhouse gas emissions, air pollution, toxic land and water, and damage to resources. 


Founded in 2009, RUR Greenlife fights back with a multi-pronged attack:

  • EPR with Tetra Pak: RUR’s flagship program, “Go Green with Tetra Pak,” in partnership with Tetra Pak, promotes extended producer responsibility by collecting and recycling Tetra Pak cartons into sustainable materials like school desks. 
  • End-to-End Waste Management: With the mantra “My Waste, My Responsibility,” they design customized plans for residential complexes, businesses, and schools focusing on plastic recycling. The company also conducts educational programs to embrace responsible waste management.
  • Waste Diversion Strategy: The company tackles plastic waste from cradle to grave. Over 90% of waste collected is diverted from landfills, freeing up resources specifically for tackling plastic waste.


RUR’s solid waste management approach supports nine out of 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals with sustainable projects that promote the circular economy through organic waste management. So far, RUR has:

  • Diverted 850,000kg+ waste from landfill
  • Mitigated 700,000 methane emissions 
  • Produced or composted > 4,000,000 compost produced annually
  • Recycled 8,800,000kg of Tetra Pak cartons

Plastroots: Converting Plastic Waste into a Resource


  • Most plastic waste ends up in landfills, contributing to environmental problems and resource depletion. 


  • Dry waste management: The team partners with local plastic waste collectors to manage recyclable waste post-consumer in the states of Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh, India.
  • Cluster-based ecosystem for villages: Plastroots operates material recovery facilities in rural Maharashtra, including collection, segregation, and forwarding of recyclables to recyclers. 
  • EPR Compliance Facilitation: The company Producer Responsibility Organizations (PROs) manage non-recyclable plastic waste, adhering to the government’s Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) guidelines.


Plastroots diverts plastic from landfills, creates recycled resources, and contributes to Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) for sustainable cities, health, and climate change. Their work demonstrably saves resources and reduces CO2 emissions. Until now, it has saved:

  • 845 trees
  • 39233.45 barrels of oil
  • 14079076.34 kWh of energy
  • 72266.45 cubic yards of landfill
  • 7211.7 tons of carbon dioxide

Bliss Pads: Revolutionizing Feminine Hygiene with Plant-Based Comfort


  • Traditional sanitary pads often make use of plastic, contributing significantly to plastic pollution. Many sanitary pads are manufactured using materials such as super absorbent polymers, non-biodegradable plastic, glue, etc., due to which they take up to 500 – 800 years to decompose!
  • These pads can cause skin irritation and discomfort for many people who menstruate. 


Bliss Pads offers a sustainable and comfortable alternative:

  • Kenaf fiber: Bliss Pads are made from natural kenaf fibers, a renewable and biodegradable resource. This eliminates plastic waste associated with conventional pads.
  • Rash-free and comfortable: The plant-based materials are gentle on the skin, minimizing the risk of irritation and promoting a more comfortable period.
  • Highly absorbent: Bliss Pads ensure effective absorption and protection for extended periods.


By offering a plastic-free, comfortable, and eco-friendly solution, Bliss Pads is paving the way for a more sustainable and healthy future for women and the planet. By sourcing the material from local farmers, the company also fosters economic development for local communities.  

Hulladek: Tackling the Plastic Crisis Through Responsible Waste Management


  •  India faces a growing crisis of electronic and plastic waste, posing environmental and health risks.
  • Improper waste disposal leads to pollution, resource depletion, and harm to ecosystems.


 Hulladek offers a comprehensive solution for plastic and e-waste management:

  • Responsible collection: Their robust network collects e-waste directly from consumers and diverse industries, diverting plastic from landfills.
  • Extended producer responsibility (EPR) compliance: Hulladek helps producers fulfill their EPR obligations by providing consultancy and managing waste streams.
  • Community engagement: They organize awareness campaigns, workshops, and waste collection drives to educate and empower individuals.
  • Convenient drop-off points: Hulladek establishes collection centers and collaborates with institutions to provide accessible waste disposal points.


By offering a combination of waste collection, education, and industry partnerships, HullaDek paves the way for a future where plastic waste is managed effectively, contributing to a cleaner and more sustainable environment. Their impact so far includes:

  • Diverting 80,32,521 kgs of waste from landfills
  • Reaching 15,000 households

Angirus: Building Blocks for a Better Future


  • Traditional brick production is a major source of air pollution, consuming vast amounts of soil, fuel, and water.
  • Plastic waste and construction and demolition waste are significant environmental pollutants, ending up in landfills and harming ecosystems.


Wricks by Angirus offers a revolutionary solution:

  • Eco-Friendly Bricks: Wricks are high-quality, sustainable building materials made from 100% recycled waste, including plastic waste and construction and demolition debris. 
  • Reduced Environmental Impact: Wricks production eliminates the need for clay extraction and significantly reduces pollution compared to traditional brickmaking.


In an industry where clay and concrete rule, Wricks has built a more sustainable future through recycled materials and innovative building materials. The bricks are 30% lighter than traditional bricks and 80% waterproof, offering several advantages to the construction industry.

econscious: Recycling, Upcycling, Beautifying


  • Overflowing landfills with post-consumer plastic waste pose a major environmental threat, polluting ecosystems and impacting human health.
  • Traditional waste management systems often lack efficient collection and recycling processes, leading to plastic pollution.


econscious addresses plastic pollution and its challenges with a comprehensive approach:

  • Source segregation waste pickup: econscious promotes responsible waste disposal by offering convenient collection services and encouraging residents to separate plastic waste at the source.
  • Value-based recycling technology: The plastic waste collected undergoes a complete recycling process, transforming it into valuable new resources like home decor, gifts, and public utility items. 


econscious’s innovative solutions have resulted in significant environmental benefits as follows:

  • Diverted over 40,000 kg of plastic waste from landfills
  • Reduced reliance on virgin plastic
  • The recycling has helped save over 116,000 kgs of CO2 emissions
  • Their source collection efforts have prevented over 4,600 cubic meters of plastic waste from accumulating.

Innovation is a Solution

As we mark Earth Day 2024, it’s exciting to see green entrepreneurs take advantage of India’s whopping $3.46 trillion market potential, according to the Aspen Network for Development Entrepreneurs

TechnoServe’s Greenr Accelerator Program is proud to be working with a new cohort of startups. Together, we are catalyzing positive economic, environmental, and social impacts not just for Earth Day but all year long. 

We hope you are inspired by the creativity, flexibility, and dedication of these innovative startups that are demonstrating that doing good for the planet can be good for people and business. 

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Garvita Sharma is a manager of marketing and communications at TechnoServe India.