Agarwal tells The Hindu the idea came after he noticed a substance on unused flowers by the river. “It looked like a spider’s web. Multiple tests later, we realized it was a fiber and this gave us the idea to create a multi-purpose natural material,” he says. The process was later developed by researchers at Indian Institutes of Technology.
Dubbed Florafoam, the bioplastic is expected to have a wide range of uses. “Based on our in-house tests, it is biodegradable and can be buried in your garden post usage,” Agarwal says. “We are now setting up our first production unit (to make 11 tonnes a day) in Kanpur and it will be operational next January. Until then, we will be working on samples for our buyers, and expanding units to Varanasi and Vrindavan.”