Textiles, fast fashion clothing and its supply-chain are the planet’s third largest polluter, releasing around 1.2 billion tonnes of CO2 per year, according to the World Economic Forum. Further, Forbes says an estimated 40% of all corporate gifts end up in landfill.
As a purpose driven company, Punar is working to solve these issues, all while supporting women artisans.
The award winning ethical and sustainable gifting company seeks to enrich the lives of women weavers in India and their communities while addressing the problem of landfill textile waste.
Punar creates sustainable gifts and homewares ethically handcrafted by women using handloom fabric made with recycled yarn.
Since its pre-launch in late 2022, Punar has turned 121 kilograms of landfill textile waste into sustainable gifts. That has saved 510,000 litres of water, using only natural dyes and non-toxic bio enzymes to create zero-emission fabrics.
And as handlooms don’t use electricity, they avoid CO2 emissions through production — for every 100 metres of handloom fabric produced, an average of 92 kilograms of CO2 emissions are avoided.
Founder: Priya Ravindra Kalyanimath
Punar is a women-owned company, committed to employing 70% or more women.
I recently spoke to founder, Priya Ravindra Kalyanimath, an accredited company director (GAICD) who has led initiatives to support gender diversity, inclusion and equal pay for women in the corporate sector over the past 20 years.
Priya launched Punar — which means “again” in Sanskrit and it is often used in the context of “rebirth” or “rejuvenation” — to support women artisans, combining traditional handloom with an innovative approach of using rejuvenated yarn that comes from landfill textile waste.
Priya explained, “Punar’s products go beyond mere gifts; they tell a story of transformation, resilience, and hope. Each item carries a message of ethical responsibility and environmental stewardship.
Punar is combining the traditional handloom with an innovative approach of using recycled yarn to not only reduce environmental impact but also to transform discarded materials into beautiful, meaningful gifts.
Solving socio-environmental problems
Punar has solutions to a number of socio-environmental problems.
Employing and upskilling women
In India, 67% of handloom weavers are underpaid and work in poor conditions.
Punar is partnering with social enterprises in India that upskill women and employ over 70% women.
Its artisans are paid fair wages — 2 to 3 times more than average handloom weavers and equal pay as their male counterparts.
honour women artisans who are making a new start in life despite their adverse socioeconomic background. Punar offers fair wages and equal pay for all.
Further, the artisans work in a supportive environment focusing on ethical production of goods.
Countering textiles waste
Globally, an estimated 92 million tonnes of textiles waste is created each year, and every second, the equivalent to a rubbish truck full of clothes ends up in landfill.
Punar is bringing artisan crafted products made from finest quality recycled yarn created by upcycling textile landfill waste. It puts waste to good use to help solve the problem of landfill waste.
Avoids toxic fast fashion production
Fast production fabrics use toxic chemicals and large quantities of water. Some of the chemicals include toxic pesticides that are used to grow cotton for fabrics, chemical-based fabric dyes and toxic waste water generated during the production process.
Punar’s partners only use recycled, organic and/or virgin yarn. The fabric dyes are natural and use zero toxic chemicals.
Positive impact in corporate gift giving
Priya said leading into the festive season, “We are inviting you to consider Punar as your preferred business gift supplier. Punar can supply premium quality promotional items, executive gifts, employee reward gifts, corporate gifts or handcraft bespoke branded creations.
“You will contribute to improving the lives of women artisans and their communities while enhancing your brand’s reputation.
“Punar offers diversity, equality, and authenticity. By partnering with Punar for all your gifting needs, you can create measurable impacts that align with corporate social responsibility and ESG objectives.
Green Friday: Australia’s sustainability-focused retail movement
Punar’s products are now listed on Australia’s Green Friday Sustainable retailers’ platform: https://www.greenfriday.com.au/store/punar.