In an attempt to reduce the global waste burden and improve female health and hygiene, an IIT Delhi-incubated startup has launched sanitary pads made from composite banana fibers that can be used multiple times. Said to last up to two years or around 120 washes, the product is made using Quadrant True Lock Technology which makes the pad leakproof. Also Read - At Janaushadhi Centres, Women Can Buy Sanitary Pads at Rs 2.5 | All You Need to Know
Priced at Rs. 199 for a pack of two pads, the product reduces chances of creating any rashes as promised by the makers. “Due to the taboo around it, women hygiene has been neglected in thought and talk. With our innovations in women hygiene, we want to empower women and make their life simpler. Even for women welfare, Government and NGOs regularly distribute subsidized disposable sanitary napkins in rural and semi-urban areas which is a huge cost and harm to environment accounting only for a short term solution. We urge these organizations to switch to Reusable Pads under #IBleedGreen movement and can save up to 75% of the cost,” said Archit Aggarwal, Founder Sanfe and B.Tech student at IIT Delhi. Also Read - QS Subject Ranking 2021: IIT Kharagpur Features Among Top 50; IIT-Bombay, Delhi, Madras Among Top 100 Engineering Institutes
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As per Menstrual Hygiene Alliance of India (MHAI), there are almost 336 million menstruating women in India, of which 36% use disposable sanitary pads summing up to 121 million. India has approximately 12.3 billion disposable sanitary napkins to be taken care of every year, and a majority of these are non-biodegradable. Most of these sanitary napkins are made of synthetic materials and plastic, which can take more than 50-60 years to decompose. This enormous amount of menstrual waste is usually dumped in landfills, thrown in open spaces and water bodies, burnt, buried (shallow burial) or flushed down toilets. These disposal techniques create a hazard for the environment. For instance, burning releases carcinogenic fumes in the form of dioxins creating an air pollution hazard, putting this waste in landfills only adds to the burden of waste, and so on.
In African Countries, Government Bodies, NGOs and UN Bodies have adapted to reusable pads which is a part of Sustainable Menstrual Hygiene and started distributing the pads to school girls making the switch to reusable pads.