The Genesis: ClayRoot Eco Solutions Inc.
Much before the name ClayRoot was formed, we - as a team- were very clear about what work we wanted ClayRoot Eco Solutions to do. There were always really two options for us to get into the whole entrepreneurship game: Our background and calling- both- pulled us towards environmental solutions for lifestyle practices but there was also a strong sense of doing something to support rural livelihoods. Both these were really close to our heart and that’s how ClayRoot came into being. But, the naming process is easier said than done. As we got down to deciding a name, we realised naming an enterprise is as difficult as naming your first born-there are a lot of suggestions from friends, family and everyone-which you are not ready to take up or turn down. We went through hundreds of names that ranged from Sanskrit to Greek words for nature and rural. Some fancy blends of English words that made no sense whatsoever. The eureka moment came 6 days later, when we realised one of the beautiful synonyms for earth is “Clay”- Clay is earth that can be moulded and is adaptable to any shape its given. It can be used by kids to play, it is highly fertile and supports many plant species. The second part of our company name; “Root” was always a strong contender because of its capacity to lend itself beautifully to absolutely anything. Being rooted or being grounded is what we-at ClayRoot- take it for. Grounded to our rural beginnings, our origins. “Clay-Root” together means, “Being rooted to our Earth”. Once we realised this, there was no going back and now, we cannot think of any other name that would have achieved what we do as well as “ClayRoot” does. We need to Create, Nurture and Sustain for the only earth we have.
ClayRoot comes into being at a time when there is need for each one of us to work on green lifestyle practices. This is all because of the scary situation we humans have backed ourselves into by using too much plastic. The non-treated plastic waste we generate globally can put anyone to shame. Our usage of plastic has resulted in something as disastrous as the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. For the uninitiated, the Great Pacific Garbage Patch is basically a garbage patch made of floating plastic in the middle of the Pacific Ocean constantly increasing in size, with the current size being bigger than the size of the United States of America. The patch ends up assimilating plastic waste from as far away as even Asian countries, creating a constant, never ending stream of marine debris seen across many oceans worldwide. The Indian Ocean Garbage Patch is a similar man-made disaster in the middle of the Indian Ocean. The debris contains styrofoam cups, bottles and diapers that take anywhere from 50 years to 450 years to degrade naturally. We just need to stop for a second and think: How did it get to this? How could we not work on a solution earlier?
The reason for not using green solutions is rather simple. It all boils down to commercial availability at price points that match the non-sustainable options in the market. For the average Indian family-middle income family- the daily struggle is, trying to get the best produce for your family at the lowest possible rate. In trying to do so, there are compromises on the way and plastic forms a part of that compromise. The way forward is to understand how scalability can be introduced in the sector so that it reaches the middle income households at a price point that makes sense. Innovation in both B2B channels and B2C channels is the need of the day and that is what ClayRoot is striving towards. In the months to come, we will work on various approaches each lining up one after the other to make green products scalable and replicable. But till that time, as Richard Rogers (Legendary Architect and Modernist) puts it across "The only way forward, if we are going to improve the quality of the environment, is to get everybody involved". Lets go green one household at a time !