One of the biggest barriers that many people face when choosing to live more sustainably is the cost of environmentally friendly products. Compared to disposable products for single use, items made from materials such as bamboo or organic cotton are often more expensive as they have an impact on the cost of materials, ethical labor and production. Started by Rabia Dhanani, Siempre Eco is a lifestyle startup committed to providing eco-friendly alternatives at affordable groceries.
After graduating amid the instability of the pandemic, Dhanani found himself with a lot of free time. To save some money and stay busy, she went on a mission to try making beeswax wrappers, an environmentally friendly alternative to plastic wrap that her family had started using at home. Beeswax wraps are made from organic cotton sheets with a coating of beeswax, pine resin and jojoba oil. These waxy layers form an antibacterial layer to keep food fresh for up to two weeks and have a long shelf life. However, they can be relatively expensive and often cost up to $ 10 apiece.
Related: This long-standing company with natural soap started by accident
After a few weeks of experimenting with different materials and spending over $ 400 of its savings, Dhanani’s experiment with beeswax wrapping finally yielded some positive results. She decided to continue this venture and sell the packaging to family and friends as a summer project. As the project gained momentum, Dhanani realized that she could create a meaningful impact on people’s daily lives while keeping her costs and CO2 footprint minimal.
Siempre Eco aims to provide people with sustainable and affordable alternatives to daily use and self-care items. Since the company’s values affect the profit, the profit margin is slightly lower than that of the competitors. In this way, prices remain consistent and encourage customers to switch to sustainable alternatives as they can afford to use them in the long run.
Over the past year, Siempre Eco has expanded its collection of products ranging from lifestyle to kitchenware, all of which use locally sourced materials and / or ethical manufacturing. The products can now be found in over 40 retail stores in Canada, and the site offers shipping worldwide. The most popular products besides beeswax wraps include bamboo straw, shower and recyclable wool dryer.
Approx. 98% of Siempre Eco’s packaging is recyclable, recyclable or biodegradable. Many of the materials are paper-based and use recycled paper and / or cardboard, including recycled paper boxes, wrapping paper and box filling. Other types of eco-friendly packaging include recyclable glassware, rice paper packaging and even corn posters that can be composted upon receipt of a package.
In the near future, Siempre Eco looks forward to preparing curated boxes of products and collaborating with other small sustainable companies to create exciting theme-based bundles. The company is also in discussions with a massive North American retailer about bringing the product range to over 400 stores.
+ Always Eco
Images courtesy of Siempre Ecisland