COVID-19 has considerably challenged and changed consumer behaviour. It has led many to question their existing lifestyle and switch to healthy and sustainable life choices.
To tap into the growing pool of conscious consumers, Bengaluru-based sustainability-focused consumer brand The Better Home has launched a range of plant-based cleaners that contain good microbes and enzymes enabling a natural cleaning action, rather than using the industrial-grade chemicals that harm the environment. The home cleaning range has four products currently -- floor cleaner, toilet cleaner, dish washing liquid and laundry detergent.
These products are free of toxic agents, making them completely safe for infants and pets, and yet are effective against all harmful bacteria and viruses.
WHO has also certified these ingredients as an effective sanitisation method against viruses. An added benefit is that even waste-water generated after using these products is not harmful and can be used to water plants.
Also, it doesn't harm the environment. When the bioenzymes-based cleaners flow into the drainage system, it doesn't change the vital and delicate ecological balance. In contrast, conventional cleaners are derived out of chemicals and increase water pollution.
"These products are available on the Better Home website and can be ordered in a subscription kit which can be customised as per a family's need. They will be available in offline stores in the next six months," says Dhimant Parekh, Founder & CEO, The Better Home.
The firm did a soft launch of the product in February 2020 and has sold 21,000 bottles to around 200 cities in India. "In just two months, these 21,000 bottles have prevented 15 million litres of chemical-laden water from flowing into our water bodies," says Parekh.
Each bottle is priced at Rs 250-300 and the monthly subscription for the four-pack kit is available at Rs 799. The founders target to earn Rs 45 crore from this range by end of this fiscal.
On using plastic bottle for packaging, Anuradha Kedia, Co-founder, The Better Home says they explored several options. "We extensively researched the carbon, energy, green and brown water footprints of available packaging options," she says.
She says that alternatives like steel, glass and bio-plastics come with their limitations. Metal and glass, for instance, have a higher footprint if one accounts for mining, processing and even shipping. Bio-plastics are yet to undergo research to establish their real impact on the environment, and their production at high scale is still a challenge.
"There is no such thing as a purely sustainable material; there are, however, Sustainable Systems - which is what we created. Our first kit comes in reusable plastic bottles, and all subsequent kits contain paper pouches, which one can empty into these bottles. We also run a take-back program where you can send the refill pouches and the bottles back to us for responsible disposal and up-cycling," says Kedia.
All refill pouches are sent in self-addressed envelopes, and customers are encouraged to send these back to the company in case they have no means to recycle or upcycle it themselves.
The products are manufactured by MSME contract manufacturers in Ahmedabad and Pune.
The Better Home is the third initiative of Dhimant Parekh and Anuradha Kedia who had earlier founded the positive stories digital media platform The Better India. Last year, they also launched Karnival.com, an e-commerce platform for sustainable products from MSMEs.