32 RE­CY­CLING FOR PROFIT: Ban­ning of Plas­tic Bags and Con­tain­ers Brings New Op­por­tu­ni­ties

Southern Innovator - - CONTENTS -

In Ghana, the cheeky Ghana­ian busi­ness­man-cum-fash­ion de­signer Kwabena Osei Bonsu wanted to do some­thing about the ubiq­ui­tous plas­tic bags that pol­lute the land­scape of the cap­i­tal, Ac­cra.

In Ac­cra, a small city of 2.2 mil­lion peo­ple, up to 60 tonnes of plas­tic pack­ag­ing is dumped on the streets ev­ery day, a fig­ure that has risen by 70 per cent over the past decade.

“I wanted to come up with an idea that would solve prob­lems in my life­time,” he said to The In­de­pen­dent.

He came up with the bril­liantly sim­ple so­lu­tion of turn­ing this waste and plas­tic bags back into us­able and fash­ion­able car­ryalls and hand­bags. He col­lects the plas­tic sacks and stitches them to­gether. The busi­ness, Trashy Bags, em­ploys a dozen tailors and seam­stresses. Launched in De­cem­ber last year, it so far has col­lected 10 mil­lion used plas­tic bags from the streets and sold more than 6,000 bags. Hand­bags go for US$7.79. – (Au­gust 2008)

• thewren­de­sign.com • melissa.com.br

A Trashy Bag worker makes a bag. • mod­u­lab.cl • trashy­bags.org

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