When A Girl Bleeds, Earth Bleeds. Because the amount of menstrual waste produced by each woman affects the environment severely. And it adds up every month. In numbers, a single woman produces 125 kg of plastic waste per year during menstruation. Using reusable sanitary pads can help India mitigate menstrual waste.
Why Menstrual Waste Is A Big Problem For India?
#1. Only 43% of Woman Use Disposable Sanitary Napkins
Disposable napkins are safe for women and the environment as very little waste is produced during manufacturing. They are cheap, skin-friendly, and last longer. But only 43 percent of women and that to be from rural India opt for eco-friendly practices.
#2. One Pad = 4 Plastic Bags
Do you know how much plastic goes into one sanitary pad? It’s around 4 plastic bags, right from the top layer of a plastic woven sheet to the absorbent gel, everything is non-biodegradable plastic.
Also Read: Top 5 Myths about Menstrual Hygiene
If we include packaging, then the plastic amount is even more. On the other hand, reusable sanitary pads are either made of cloth or non-plastic material.
#3. Improper Waste Management
#4. Indian Women Produces 44,125 Million Kg Menstrual Waste
#5. One Pad Takes 500-800 Years For Disposable
If you calculate all these numbers, then the amount of menstrual waste will be higher than the other waste. Therefore, it is a serious issue and should be tackled without compromising with health hygiene of women.
These are the reasons why manufacturers and the Government is emphasizing the use of reusable sanitary pads. And these women entrepreneurs are taking this green cause to greater heights.
Green Menstruation Is The New Solution
Several small-scale manufactures and NGOs are taking the issues into their own hand. Right from educating women about menstrual hygiene, and the importance of reusable menstrual pads, they are doing everything for green menstruation.
Here are few such Great Green Initiatives by women entrepreneurs:
1. Saukhyam Reusable Pads
The green initiative “ Amrita SeReVe” by MAM( Mata Amritanandyamayi Math) is an award-winning project. They are completely eco-friendly, made from a naturally absorbent material (banana fiber), and a zero-waste product. The fiber comes from agro-waste.
On the other hand, cellulose fiber that goes into the conventional sanitary napkins comes from trees.
Other benefits of Saukhyam include affordability, ease of production, and high absorbent power.
The product is ISO labeled and appreciated even by the UN during a climate change conference in 2018.
2. Eco Femme
Kathy Walking, the founder of Eco Femme, started this initiative as a solution to her own problem during a trip to India. The Australian businesswoman is now producing hundreds of reusable sanitary pads for women of Tamil Nadu.
3. My Pad
Hygiene imitative by a Delhi-based NGO, Goonj, offers more accessible options to women. As a part of their project, they receive old clothes as a donation for their product. Besides this, their aim is to educate and make women aware of menstrual hygiene.
Not just these, more and more green initiatives are gaining momentum to cut down menstrual waste whilst giving safe products to women.