In February 2023, two mothers ensured that their son and daughter got married in a green, no-plastic wedding, all with a thousand guests in attendance!
The groom’s mother, Anupama Harish, laid down the condition that the wedding must be plastic-free, and took on the responsibility of handling the waste.
Charulatha R, the bride’s mother, got only the minimum number of wedding cards printed and asked guests to avoid bouquets and gift wrappers.
They then decided on a menu that would involve less cutlery. There were no plastic cups or water bottles at the wedding either.
They rented steel cutlery from ‘Adamya Chetana’, which is a free cutlery bank. Food was served on banana leaves while the steel plates were used only for the reception.
By using steel cutlery, 30,000 single-use disposables were effectively avoided.
The wedding waste was segregated and composted by Vasuki Iyengar from the Solid Waste Management Round Table (SWMRT) in Bengaluru.
According to SWMRT, over 4,000 meals were served during the wedding, which was spread over three days. This led to about 1,000 kg of wet waste, which was later turned into 300 kg of compost.
The SWMRT team placed drums filled with cocopeat to collect the wet waste and instructed the staff to segregate the waste accordingly. The paper and flower waste was sent to the collection centre.
As for the gifts for the guests, Anupama packed them using a 19-year-old butter paper she found in her attic!
They only used fresh flowers for the decorations as well. The bride’s friends also pitched in and sent some of these flowers to a studio in Mumbai, which used them as natural dyes and created clothes for the couple.