A couple helping us live Eco-Friendly life - the "Dopolgy" way
February 28th , 2021 | Akshata
Who's responsibility is to clean it up?
We (Akshata & Rahul) stood looking down from the balcony of our small apartment we were renting in Bangalore in 2018 after returning from Jakarta, Indonesia. There was plastic packets, delivery boxes and waste spewn around, while the residents of that locality fought as to whose responsibility was it to clean it up. There was silence as we had an epiphany of being part of this problem. Adding to this, the trees we had grown up with in Bengaluru was cut down in the name of development and one particular video of a plastic straw being taken out of a turtle’s nose as it squealed in pain, brought some serious realisation in us. We realised, for 28 years we had added to this problem and not really caring about nature even though we called ourselves trekkers who loved nature. Thus began a journey to reduce the waste we produced and to make our new home plastic free.
Most of the cutlery came from our parent’s home (the ones they had in excess) and the storage boxes purchased were switched to steel and glass containers. Plastic generated at home was put to recycling and the organic waste was composted. It surprised me that the waste generated was cut down more than 70%. Encouraged by this, we started looking for green alternatives to switch at our home. Bamboo toothbrushes were priced at Rs.270 then and even for someone who could afford it, it seemed too pricey. I set out in search of products while trying to understand, why these products were high priced. I came across products like Bamboo toothbrushes, Newspaper pencils etc which were priced lower, but the catch was to buy in bulk. I also understood that awareness and lack of accessibility seemed to be the reason for lesser people in India adapting to being eco-friendly, people whose ancestors and elders were eco-friendly from medieval times.
The test run & the birth of the Company
We decided to do a test, the idea was to buy a bunch of bamboo brushes in bulk and go attend a flea market to see the reactions of the audience. With our brand name ‘Dopolgy’ scribbled on a piece of cardboard, we were sold out in 2 hours of the event. Most were not aware and they easily adapted to it the moment they knew about it. The brushes were sold at Rs.50 each.
Thus was born Dopolgy, officially registered in September 2018 as an online store(ecom) that sourced and sold green alternatives to people who wanted to start their eco-friendly journey. Bamboo toothbrush (adult & baby), Natural Loofah, Newspaper Pencils, Reusable straws, Cotton bags etc were some of the products we sold initially.
With the foundation of sustainability and wanting to reduce the carbon footprint of every product, Dopolgy always associated with vendors who would not use plastic and would be transparent about the products made. We eventually decided to become manufacturers of the Newspaper pencils in 2019, with the thought of being able to control the pricing of the pencils and the freedom to customize and experiment with pencils.
The idea of Sustainability to reach the masses
Over 1 lakh pencils have been sold and over 5000 pencils donated so far. We were successful in turning people and corporates into switching to Newspaper pencils for everyday usage or gifting purposes.
In 2020 March, we decided to shift the headquarters from Bengaluru to Dharwad, where our unit was too. The intent was to take the sustainability movement to Tier II & Tier III cities, as our ideology has always been to reach the masses.
Dopolgy – Never in a box but constantly evolving
At Dopolgy, the core value is to keep evolving and not only help reduce creating waste, but also to reduce the waste that already exists in the world. We work to create a green solution to every requirement that comes to us or that exists around us.
As a customer/community centric brand, Dopolgy also started Seedpaper printables in 2019 on a request of a customer for affordable and good quality prints. We have done over 50000 prints so far, ranging from wedding invites, visiting cards, Name tags, event tags, Product tags, thank you cards, bookmarks, brochures etc
From creating event tags with upcyled cloth strings and seedpaper cards to making awards from recycled tetrapak boards, Dopolgy team leverages on their strong design and problem solving skills tagged with marketing and sales experience to make sustainable products a way of life.
Along with environmental responsibility, Dopolgy also works to fulfil the social responsibility by associating with NGO for upcycled packaging and doing drives to plant trees.
Team Dopolgy thrives to do a lot more than just what meets the eye, to make sustainability accessible to each one of them and for every occasion.
The author of the story is Akshata, Founder of ‘Dopolgy’ and you can reach out to them for more information at .
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