News Feature: Plant-Based Leather Made from Temple Left Over Flowers a Game Changer
Phool.co, an Indian startup company, has created plant-based leather made of leftover temple flowers. This cruelty-free leather is dubbed as a game-changer in the fashion industry. According to an interview with the co-founder of the company, Ankit Agarwal, their research and development team has discovered how to make the flower petal leftovers into fake leather that is as strong as animal leather.
Animal leather contains collagen that makes it durable and long-lasting. It can withstand the test of time. This plant-based leather from Phool.com has chitin (a form of protein) that makes it durable as well. It can be the perfect substitute for animal leather to achieve a cruelty-free product.
According to a report conducted by Conscious Fashion, there was an increase of 69% on the keyword search for sustainable products, specifically 'vegan leather'. People are now more conscious of their purchases. Average searches are at 33,000 per month. Along with this trend in Google Search, the demand for cruelty-free plant-based leather has also been on the rise.
The company also manufactures incense cones, sticks, and vermicompost. Every morning, Indians go to their temples to pray. Hardly do people think about what happens to flowers after they have been offered. According to statistics, each year 8 million tons of flower-waste are dumped into rivers like the Ganges. This makes the water highly toxic because of the pesticides, insecticides, and other chemicals that are used to grow the flower. This same river is also the source of drinking water for 420 million Indians. The Ganges is also where the people bath and is a source of their livelihood. (source: Our Better World)
The startup company has created a new life for waste flowers not just by creating a new cruelty-free plant-based leather but also creating job opportunities for marginalized women. The jobs created by the company have been a game-changer in the leather industry as well as the work sector for marginalized Indian women.