5 Indian start-ups join Fashion for Good’s South Asia Innovation Programme – Puja Gupta

Focussing on technologies and innovations in raw materials, wet processing, packaging, end-of-use and digital acceleration, a total of nine innovators – including five from

By Puja Gupta

Five Indian innovators have made it to the second batch of Fashion for Goods South Asia Innovation Programme, the organisation announced on Thursday.

Focussing on technologies and innovations in raw materials, wet processing, packaging, end-of-use and digital acceleration, a total of nine innovators – including five from India – have been selected who aim to bring solutions into the programme crucial to the manufacturing and supply chains in South Asia.

The second batch joins Fashion for Good’s global selection of start-ups driving the industry’s transformation towards a more sustainable, circular system.

The selected innovators in the South Asia Innovation Programme’s second batch are: Bagrotec (Indonesia — Raw Materials), Biomize (India — Raw Materials), KB Cols Sciences (India — Wet Processing), Lucro (India — End of Use), Nordshield (Finland — Wet Processing), Phabia (India — Packaging), Phool (India — Raw Materials), PoshaQ (India — Digital Acceleration) and Swatchbook (USA — Digital Acceleration).

Biomize technology makes bamboo and agri-waste based granules that are alternatives to plastic, are certified home compostable, and can be drawn into textile fibres and fabrics that have fashion, medical and industrial applications.

KB Cols wants to change the landscape of dyeing in the fashion industry by focusing on harnessing the true potential of Biotechnology. Through the exploration of various renewable resources, KB Cols extract natural colours that can be applied in textiles and other applications.

Lucro produces high quality, innovative and recycled plastic waste to remake products, ultimately seeking to close the loop and make plastic sustainable. It caters to big industries including retail, FMCG and automotive, exporting their products to the US and Europe.

Phabio offers bioplastic solutions made from biodegradable polymers made from renewable biomass obtained from waste in the beer, dairy and sugar industries, as well as food waste and sea weeds. These bioplastics can also be made from agricultural waste, used plastic bottles and other containers using micro-organisms.

Katrin Ley, Managing Director — Fashion for Good, said: “We’re extremely pleased to welcome nine new innovators into our second batch of the South Asia Programme. Now more than ever, it’s important to support and scale the innovations in one of the industry’s most crucial manufacturing regions that can provide vital solutions to help build back stronger, more sustainable and resilient.”

Due to current circumstances surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, the selection day for the second batch of innovators was held virtually. A total of 19 innovators, who were shortlisted from over 100 start-ups, attended from across the globe to pitch their innovations with sustainable solutions focused on the South Asia region. Earlier this year, more than 50 innovators had participated in the Fashion for Good Innovation Challenge run in collaboration with Startup India, which concluded last month. Two of the final innovators, Biomize and PoshaQ, were selected from this group to join the programme.

A jury of regional Fashion for Good partners together with an advisory council of global Fashion for Good partners selected the final nine innovators, with whom they will collaborate closely in the coming nine months. With three innovators having female founders and co-founders, the new batch includes innovations in raw materials — specifically biopolymers, bamboo fibre and alternative leathers and foams, wet processing – namely anti-microbial finishes and microbial dyes, digital acceleration solutions in AI and image processing and virtual swatches, as well as end-of-use solutions, closing the loop and making plastic products more sustainable.

(Puja Gupta can be contacted at puja.g@ians.in)

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