Plastic waste traded for food at Indian ‘Garbage Cafes’ 

Garbage cafe India

In Delhi, designated eateries called “garbage cafes” tackle plastic waste while providing meals for those in need. Akash, a local resident, collects plastic daily to exchange it for food vouchers at these cafes. 

Initiated by the Municipal Corporation of Delhi in 2020, the program encourages individuals to drop off plastic waste in exchange for complimentary meals at participating restaurants. The aim is to manage plastic use and promote recycling. Business owners like Yash Kumar of Evergreen Cafe have witnessed increased awareness and participation. 

Delhi faces significant plastic pollution, with efforts including fines for small plastic bags and initiatives promoting reusable packaging. The garbage cafe concept originated in Chhattisgarh in 2019 and has spread across India, reflecting a growing commitment to sustainability. 

Plastic collected at these cafes can be repurposed for construction or gardens. Benu Malhotra from a nonprofit  organisation in New Delhi called Parvaah, advocates for replicating the garbage cafe model nationwide, highlighting its dual benefits of waste management and community support.

Photo: (c) Rishabh Jain

https://reasonstobecheerful.world/india-garbage-cafes-free-meals/

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Author: Sylvia Jacobs

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