Himachal man makes incense sticks from flower waste

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Himachal man makes incense sticks from flower waste
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Shimla: April 28: Soon you can buy organic incense sticks prepared from flowers offered by devotees at religious places in Himachal Pradesh.

Under a campaign ‘Yuvan’, Una-based entrepreneur Ravinder Prashar, with the technical support from Dr Y.S. Parmar University of Horticulture and Forestry in Nauni, has developed incense sticks by using flower offerings from temples, it was announced on Saturday.

The idea, supported under the Chief Minister’s Startup Scheme, aims to provide a novel solution to the problem of disposal of flowers offered by devotees at places of worship. Moreover, flowers used in religious places and functions also get a new life in the form of incense sticks.

“The objective was to use flowers from temples and utilise them to make organic incense sticks. Through this, we also wanted to provide an alternative to the disposal of flowers in open areas and drains,” Prashar said.

Prashar, a bachelor of engineering from BITS-Pilani, had registered a company, Yuvan Vendors, during the last semester of his MBA, a university statement said. Thereafter, he took this up with the help of Chief Minister’s StartUp Scheme.

The product was developed under the guidance of Bharti Kashyap, who along with Y.C. Gupta and Manoj Vaidya provided the scientific input in product development. The testing for the product was done at the Floral Craft Lab of the university.

Undet the process, natural portions and essential oils from flowers are used to make organic incense with no charcoal or any other synthetic chemical. Also, the stick making process is carbon neutral. No waste is generated and even the unused parts of flowers are used to make compost.

The company has developed five fragrances, including rose, sandal and lavender. All the sticks are rolled with hand. These will be available to customers from June.

Vice-Chancellor H.C. Sharma said, “The university helps farmers set up new enterprises through the dissemination of information and transfer of technology and will continue to support such initiatives.”(ians)