Best Ideas 2022 features all the nominated entries submitted under ‘Submit your Idea’ category. All the entries consist of innovative solutions or propositions for an enterprise that champions the Sustainable Development Goals. They can be on the conceptual, planning, or start-up stage.

TheGreenBox

Stage of Idea planning stage, start-up stage

Explain your idea in details:

In recent years we use packaging for almost everything throughout the day. Annually, over 82.2 million tons of waste is generated from packaging. We have all been told about the importance of making environmentally sustainable decisions, but the real question is how the average consumer can start. The Green Box allows environment-consciousness consumers to reduce packaging waste by replacing their plastic packaging with a reformed version of Areca leaf packaging. Areca leaf packaging is made by repurposing fallen leaves of areca nut trees. The leaves are pressure-washed and dried in the sun, then sterilized and cast into the necessary shape. Areca packaging is sturdy and light while being durable and completely odorless, alongside its resistance to heat and water. This allows for it to be placed in the microwave, unlike plastic packaging. Moreover, areca products are completely free from harmful chemicals in the creation process, making them natural, organic, and biodegradable. Moreover, The Green Box can be easily decomposed into the soil within a week and grow into a new plant. The Green Boxs vision is to replace all plastic packaging with eco-friendly areca-based food containers that also contain seeds to allow for the potential to be replanted and regrown into a plant. The product will help develop environmental awareness, as well as bring a sense of satisfaction and achievement to the customers afterward.

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Expected impact of your idea on sustainable development

The Environmental Protection Agency estimates that plastic packaging waste makes up over 30% of the annual waste in the U.S. Of the 34.5 million tons of plastic waste, only a small 9% is properly recycled, with the rest of the plastic being sent to landfills and ecosystems across the globe. In the past, China used to be the main recipient of American waste, but after the banning of waste imports, the U.S. is posed with the task of massive amounts of plastic waste. There were almost 30 million tons of plastic sent to landfills in 2017, and the number is growing by the year. In a DotCom Distribution study, 57% of respondents said that eco-friendly packaging is important to them, but the rest of the respondents claim that they have a lack of incentive to change from traditional plastic packaging, as well as are skeptical of the alternatives. The Green Box addresses this very concern: the areca-leaf properties pose a very reliable, if not better alternative to plastic packaging while also allowing users to have the incentive of growing a new plant and further spreading environmental awareness. The Green Box plans to address the growing concern of plastic waste in the U.S. and attract more users to the importance of environmental sustainability and the switch away from plastic containers. We will go off the number of sales and partnerships to measure our success and plan on creating a more variety of food packaging models to expand our customer base in the coming years.

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Plans for implementation and sustainability

Our target market was identified through a survey that received over 270+ positive responses. The end users for The Green Box is the younger generation, specifically Generation Z as they care the most about environmental protection. Interviews were conducted on individuals and businesses across four different countries: India, China, the US, and Australia. From flower sellers in China to fast food chains in the United States, businesses that focused on environmental awareness and sustainability were targeted. We plan to use a B2B business model by contracting with various local restaurants and stores to replace their plastic take-out packaging with The Green Box. Moreover, after gaining initial traction, we plan on expanding our business to sell boxes to individual customers. We will expand our customer base effectively through social media, which will help target the younger generation as well as build trust online. Moreover, further face-to-face interviews will be conducted to create closer bonds. Upon research and contacting factories in India, it would cost 7 cents to create a box (including the box itself, hinge, and seeds). With customer willingness and competition in mind, we price the containers at 25 cents in India to initially start off, which allows for a high margin of profit.

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Your profile

My name is Daniel H. Park from the United States. I am currently 16 years old and am passionate about social entrepreneurship and environmental sustainability. I am interested in entrepreneurship because I believe it is a way of how we understand the world and connect with other individuals. I earned the Genius Olympiad Award and Conrad Innovator and attended the Launch X Program with the Top Start-Up Pitch award. I also work as the Youth Goodwill Ambassador as well as the board member of the Environmental Action Committee at school.

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