HOW SCENTORA MANAGES ITS WASTE
Our plant butters for Body Butters, oils, waxes for Candles and Lip Balms, and our ingredients for Shampoo Bars all come in plastic packaging.
This type of plastic packaging is something we cannot avoid either.
Because distributors are law-bound to ensure their supply follows the strict rules and standards reserved for cosmetic raw materials. Typically, plastic packaging gets used for the following reasons:
- To maintain hygiene in general
- To maintain its integrity during shipment
- To preserve freshness and to keep the raw materials in their natural state
And these are standards that distributors cannot legally violate.
It is also worth pointing out that Scentora gets these raw materials in bulk, which is in five kilograms or more for each raw material.
Now, that’s quite a bit of plastic to manage. And here is how we do it.
One of the best ways by which we manage plastic is by limiting the amount of it we get. And we do that by opting to buy from local businesses that have legally possible plastic-free options for some raw materials. Here is a list of the raw materials we use that have plastic-free options:
Cold-Pressed Coconut Oil -
We have discovered vendors who align with our values to give us cold-pressed coconut oil in glass containers or are willing to sell us the oil in existing, clean containers that we already own.
We have a good rapport with other similar successful local businesses that deliver high-quality coconut oil and believe in sustainable living.
It is worth noting that coconut oil is a prominent ingredient in almost all our products, including soaps, body butters, lip balms, coffee scrub, cream deodorants, hair oil, and shampoo bars. And it is a huge win to have found a plastic-free option for one of our crucial raw materials.
Powders for Face Packs and Scrubs -
Our powders like rose powder, kasturi manjal (wild turmeric), besan (gram flour), mulethi (licorice powder), and more are available in bulk at wholesale markets. And the vendors there are happy to accommodate requests to use personal containers instead of new plastic ones.
Note: Due to past Covid-19 restrictions, it has been difficult for Team Scentora to visit places in person to obtain these ingredients. During this time, we had to revert to plastic-packaged powders. But we hope to get back to normal soon.
EXPLORING WAYS TO REUSE
Mitigation is not enough on its own. There is only so much mitigation that a business can do since not all raw materials can be obtained plastic-free. We still have to deal with the existing packing/cushioning waste and find ways to manage it efficiently.
Waste from packaging includes plastic, but also cardboard boxes, newspapers, bubble wrap, and more.
One of the best ways to tackle this waste is by reusing the packaging.
How Scentora reuses the waste from packaging -
Scentora’s office headquarters is usually in need of boxes and plastic covers during day-to-day management.
Here’s an explanation of which packing materials get used for which purpose:
- Scentora reuses the cardboard boxes it receives to organize and store products and empty containers.
- We also keep these boxes stacked for future use for bulk shipments, stalls, and the like.
- Scentora uses smaller cardboard boxes to permanently store stationery, stamps, label sheets, and similar items.
- We also reuse these boxes to store items meant for recycling.
- Scentora reuses intact plastic covers with an openable flap and existing plastic bags to store papers, scraps, and pouches.
- Plastic covers that are compromised or open-mouthed usually carry our daily paper trash that will eventually head to recycling.
- We also store some intact plastic covers for emergencies.
Most of the other unusable plastic, including bubble wrap and other plastic cushioning materials, go to local recyclers willing to accept such waste.
Recycling is the final step in reducing our plastic waste throwaway. We make sure it goes to people who either break it apart responsibly or reuse it for their purposes.
Local Recyclers -
- We collect and periodically hand over our unusable plastic waste and paper scraps to recyclers in our area. Local recyclers categorize and separate these materials for reuse or further processing.
- We also collect and periodically hand over our essential oil containers (aluminum bottles with plastic lids) to the recyclers we know. They break apart these bottles and re-sell the metal scraps for their income.
- The recyclers in our area also accept damaged/unusable cardboard boxes that get broken down and taken to facilities for further processing.
Waste management is a priority for Scentora, being a sustainability-driven business. We keep waste management in mind at every phase, from raw material procurement to packaging and delivery. We are always on the lookout for more efficient methods to deal with our waste, and we aim to reuse materials as best we can.
We wholeheartedly believe that waste management is a necessary and worthwhile area of focus for any business, small or large. And this is something we preach and practice.