In this episode of Active Bengaluru, Shiva Manjesh and Jagadish Reddy talk about eco-friendly Castor Stem Straws. Jagadish Reddy is a Public Relations professional and Shiva Manjesh is a Civil Engineer.
Castor stem straws are completely eco-friendly. “My parents told me that in older days, they would either drink coconut water without any straws or use castor stems. This triggered an idea in my mind. We started distributing these straws free of cost to many vendors who were eager to switch to an eco-friendly lifestyle. Depending on the requirement, we started arranging for the supply. All we want is for Bengaluru to be plastic-free.”
First, the stems are cut from the plant and washed and cleaned thoroughly using room-temperature water. Next, they are placed in hot water that has been mixed with salt, and washed again to get rid of all the dirt and kill all the bacteria. The dry straws are then left in the sun for a week to dry further. “The fresh ones can be used immediately after the wash, and can stay good for up to 15 days. GKVK in Bengaluru and the Indian Institute of Horticultural Research (IIHR) in Hessaraghatta have done preliminary trials and certify that the product is superb for disposable use as it is 100% biodegradable. We have been advised to approach CFTRI in Mysuru for a study and the formal permit.”
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