ITC unveils Sustainability Innovation Challenge

Support to single-use plastic, automated waste segregation

ITC Paperboards and Specialty Papers Division (PSPD) in collaboration with Invest India has launched ITC Sustainability Innovation Challenge for start-ups with innovative ideas on sustainable packaging and smart waste management solutions.

Entries are being invited through the Startup India portal towards challenges laid out to find sustainable solutions to substitute single-use plastics and automate waste segregation process with smart technology-based solutions to improve efficiency and speed, ITC PSPD said.

The selected start-ups will get incentives at various stages, including mentorship from experts, paid pilot opportunity and assistance in testing and certification at the ‘Development Stage’. This will be followed by support to enable market expansion and capacity building through funding opportunities in the ’Early Market Play Stage’. At the ‘Late Stage’, the start-ups will get procurement opportunities and could be evaluated, on a case to case basis, for funding and acquisition opportunities as well. The deadline to submit proof of concept is February 28.

The Sustainability Innovation Challenge underlines ITC’s engagements with the start-up ecosystem, in collaboration with Invest India, to crowdsource out-of-the box ideas for phasing out single-use plastics by 2022, said Vadiraj Kulkarni, CEO of ITC PSPD. He said this citing how disposal of plastic and non-biodegradable waste continues to pose the biggest challenge on solid waste management front in the country. It is further aggravated due to inefficient segregation of post-consumer waste at the source which leads to a lot of waste ending up in landfills, which is highly polluting.

“Innovative start-ups will be able to showcase Made-in-India solutions that propel India towards a circular economy,” said Deepak Bagla, MD and CEO of Invest India, which is a non-profit venture under the Centre’s Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade.

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