A sustainable answer to plastic

At a time when the world is saying “no to plastic”, bamboo can be considered as a sustainable alternative. The natural resource is especially significant in this part of the country where bamboos grow in abundance.
Bamboo is traditionally an intrinsic part of not only the tribes in the North East but also those living in the eastern, western and central parts of India. From furniture to objects of daily use, bamboo has proved its versatility for years.
But with gradual urbanisation and the advent of cheap plastic, the natural resource lost much of its popularity among new-age consumers. Affordability and availability made plastic an inseparable part of our lives. Even to this day, it is nearly impossible to completely reject plastic products. Having said that, we should remember that there is no harm in trying to give up plastic steadily. With each one’s effort, there is hope that the course of plastic pollution can be reversed.
This is exactly what Shillong Bamboo intends to do. “It was created with the vision to provide healthy and sustainable living. Also, we guarantee our brand to be vegan, organic and biodegradable and so you can feel good about what you are using,” says owner Bandap Dewkhaid.
Formed in 2015, Shillong Bamboo has expanded its product variety over the years. The innovative products have earned Dewkhaid national recognition and he has supply chains in all prominent cities.
On the longevity of the products, Dewkhaid says bamboo has the “compressive force of concrete and the strength-to-weight ratio of steel”.
“New treatment methods have given it (bamboo) a longer lifespan. Our bamboo, selectively harvested from local sources, is treated ecologically, then lab-tested to confirm its durability and integrity,” he adds.
Shillong Bamboo has also improvised on its old products. For instance, earlier its bamboo brushes had plastic bristles but now it is using corn fibre to make it absolutely biodegradable. Among other products are coffee mugs, fairy lights, furniture, straws, speakers, towel holders, laundry baskets, cane carpets and water bottles.
Varsha G, who got products delivered to her house in Bengaluru, is happy to add natural colour to the décor and wants to experiment with more bamboo products.
As awareness on the ill effects of plastic is spreading, many people are opting for eco-friendly materials like cane, bamboo and natural fibres for interior décor and upholstery.
“Our bamboo products are priced at an affordable rate. The items are made of well-treated bamboo and no chemicals are used in the process,” said Dewkhaid, who is visioning a holistic change in the lifestyle of people.
Shillong Bamboo will start an educational centre where children can learn about the importance of the natural resource and how it can be a crucial weapon in fighting against plastic demon.

Photo courtesy: The Facebook page of Shillong Bamboo Inc.

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