Plaswood: Plastic waste crunched into pieces becomes ply-plastic

By GGGI
Sep 18 2019 (IPS-Partners)

Environment always becomes my first concern. Plastic wastes and deforestations are the major issues that I have involved with. The story behind the business concept occurred when I was running a small construction project to build a room in the apartment which I needed to buy plywood to build that room. At that time, I realized that the plywood is totally made from woodchips. I then got an idea of ply-plastic by crunching the plastic into pieces and transforming them to ply-plastic. 

Plastic consumption and waste are in the positive growth, especially in the developing countries. The amount of 300 million tons of plastic has been produced every year. There are 8.3 billion metric tons of plastic that has been produced, 6.3 billion metric tons has become plastic waste. In Cambodia, according to the ACRA Foundation, around 10 million plastic bags are used in Phnom Penh every day. Urban Cambodians use more than 2,000 plastic bags every year.

Besides, deforestation is also the tough issue harmfully affecting the climate change. The total world forest loss till date is 7.3 million hectares per year. Amazon forest is also under threat. On the other hand, we are dealing with the current production in Cambodia that lack of sustainable association which creates lot of negative impact to social and environment, using more than 900,000 cubic meters of forests and producing more than 100 million tons of CO2 emission in last 5 year.

To solve this problem, we design the leading quality of eco-friendly and sustainable product with affordable price while proving the social and environmental impact through developing new product using plastic waste- called ply-plastic.

Plaswood specializes in the design and manufacture of plastic plywood that uses plastic waste recycling into ply-plastic, normally made from wood chips. It can be used in any kind of activities as the substitute product in the construction industry. Focused primarily on environmental issues, the company sees that plastic waste keeps increasing and forests are being cut down. Our facility was designed and built to create a production setting that minimizes environmental variables. The company aims at:

  • Using plastic waste in production to create ply-plastic product;
  • Reducing the consumption of trees; and
  • Providing longer product durability than the existing alternatives.

For the initial process of the business, the company’s strategic operation is to make strong corporation with local waste collecting company by selecting valuable plastic wastes. The manufacturing process will start by using hi-tech machine as its operation.

In 2018, Plaswood made a chance to participate in competition – Asean Virtual Business Plan Competition – which was organized by Australian government which took place at Thailand. Unfortunately, the project got 4th place among 82 teams, comprising 232 individuals from 6 countries.

In mid-2018, this project has been applied the competition in England under the Worldlabs organization. Unfortunately, it’s been awarded as the top 100 shortlist projects among the hundreds of high-quality candidates. In mid-2019, Plaswood have been brought to another competition, organized by Canadian organization, under the Greenpreneur program and the idea is selected among 200 applications.

Currently, we’re working with Greenpreneur program to develop product to the real market. We have been working on this business idea with this program for around 3 months by having the virtual training with the Canadian teams to write the business plan in this acceleration program.

We are also given the weekly tasks to complete and the mentor to help our team working on the idea which we aim to make this idea to the real market in Cambodia.

Greenprenuer has given more insight about social lean business plan while the impact modelling is the key point to make the business more realistic. Guest speakers are invited to share their experiences regarding their stories of successes and failures. It has been an amazing experience to have been working virtually with the program. We gratefully thank the organizing teams for hardworking and feedback to improve our project.

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