Often PET or polyethylene terephthalate bottles used to package carbonated soft drinks, water, and mouthwash, end up in landfills and take a considerable amount of time to break down.
In order to protect the environment, father-son duo K Sankar and Senthil Sankar run Shree Renga Polymers, through which they recycle 15 lakh PET bottles every day.
Using the manufacturing strength of his father’s company, Senthil decided to take a step further and started EcoLine — a sustainable fashion clothing brand — in 2021.
At EcoLine, PET bottles are recycled to manufacture sustainable clothing, such as jackets, blazers, T-shirts, and bottoms.
“We use around eight PET bottles to make a T-shirt, 20 to make a jacket, and 30 to make a blazer,” says Senthil.
He adds, “We are India’s first fashion brand to recycle PET bottles to make end-to-end products. We want to take the concept of sustainability worldwide and sensitise people about sustainable fashion.”
In February 2023, the brand received widespread acclaim when Prime Minister Narendra Modi wore the company’s blue sadri jacket to Parliament.
Senthil points out that conventionally, textile dyeing requires 2.4 trillion gallons of water every year. However, the company uses dope dye technology, which doesn’t require a single drop of water in the process.
“With dope dyeing, colour is added when the polyester is being made from PET bottles. We do not need a single drop of water to colour the fibre,” he says.
Priced anywhere between Rs 500 and Rs 6,000, Senthil says they manage to get at least 20,000 orders per month for their unique garments, and that EcoLine clocks an annual revenue of Rs 12 crore.