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Hyderabad: We all know that segregation of waste is the first step towards protecting the environment and yet many of us are either not able to do this regularly or at the time of collection all the waste gets mixed – thus making our efforts pointless.

This is exactly what Pavani Lolla had seen and faced most of her life and she decided to take matters into her own hands. The electronics engineer was always keen on taking the path of entrepreneurship, and was also interested in eco-friendly solutions. She decided to combine both and founded Future Step which makes machines that could compost organic waste and help in segregating waste at home.

Pavani Lolla.

For Pavani, the whole idea of this product started while she as a student was part of an eco-club wherein they used to reach out to villages to raise awareness about waste segregation. “Then I joined ISB for a Technology Entrepreneurship Programme (TEP) after my MBA and in the programme, I learned about product prototyping among other things. After a lot of research, we realised that almost 60 per cent of waste at home is organic and can be composted,” says Pavani who co-founded the company along with Siddhesh Sakore, who runs an NGO in Pune.

After many iterations, the co-founders were able to develop a portable composting machine that can be kept at home to compost organic waste – which includes food and vegetable waste, among other things. Only waste composting might leave a bad smell in the house, and to cut that smell, the company developed Vapra composting mix which can be reused for a period of one-and-a-half-year. With the mix and the machine, a household can compost their waste in just seven days while normal composting takes anywhere between 30-45 days. “Along with the Vapra home composting kit which costs around Rs 3,500, we also have the green mix, a Vapra plant pit composter that we have set up at Uppal vegetable market. As part of our pilot project, we have set up the plant pit composter in the vegetable market so that all the vegetable waste can get composted. We have got help from GHMC in setting up the plant,” says Pavani.

Apart from this, the WE Hub startup also has plans to launch its Vapra Society Composter which will be set up at large gated communities and societies in the next month or so. The startup which has been in the market since November 2020 plans to expand its plant pit composter and society composter in Telangana and then venture into other States.




Author: Howard Caldwell