Minu Srivastava
Minu is a Beauty and Personal Care Analyst based in Mumbai. She specialises in analysing and providing insights on consumer behavioural trends and beauty and personal care market in India.

Livaeco, a sustainable fabric brand by Birla Cellulose, the pulp and fibre business of the Aditya Birla Group in India, has introduced eco-friendly plantable tags to its garments. The tags are made with seed paper from recycled, biodegradable fibres, and can be sown into a planter.

The tag needs to be soaked in water for five-to-six-hours and then planted under half an inch of soil and placed in sunlight. With this initiative, Birla Cellulose intends to create a positive environmental footprint by engaging consumers with eco-friendly practices right from sourcing to the final degradation of the garment. The Livaeco fabric uses wood pulp sourced from FSC-certified forests, utilises less water, is biodegradable and provides traceability of source.

It is a welcome move, as Mintel research reveals that more than a third of Indians living in the metro areas of India say that supporting environmentally conscious businesses motivates them to lead a natural lifestyle.

Brands are taking measures across the value chain to reduce their impact on the environment. It is crucial that companies ensure they take steps towards making the average consumer more aware of eco-friendliness and the need to incorporate sustainability into daily life.

Globally, companies and brands are aware of the need to introduce initiatives to up their eco-friendly quotient. For example, Johnson & Johnson Vision and TerraCycle have collaborated to offer a UK-wide contact lens recycling scheme, while a hair salon in Australia is offering 10% discounts to customers who ride their bike to their appointments, or bring their shampoo and conditioner bottles to refill.

What we think

As consumers become conscious about their environmental impact and start seeking to align themselves with brands that share their concerns, companies will have to embrace sustainability throughout their value chain.

Moreover, consumer packaged goods and consumer durable companies that go beyond themselves and assist consumers in doing their part through initiatives like refill, recycling, responsible disposal, among others, will have a definitive edge over their peers and gain consumer loyalty.