Updated: November 25, 2017 8:12:35 am
Residents of Pimpri-Chinchwad may soon get to use a special kind of cycle: one that is made of bamboo, weighs only 2 kg, but is also sturdy and easy to ride. The cycles are manufactured by Bamboo India, a Pune-based company.
Yogesh Shinde, founder of Bamboo India, said concerns about the increasing use of plastic, and its harmful effects on the planet, prompted him to introduce cycles made of bamboo. He is hopeful that these cycles will become part of the Pimpri-Chinchwad Municipal Corporation’s planned ‘rent-a-cycle’ scheme.
“We are currently in talks with the civic body and are awaiting a meeting, which is yet to be scheduled, with the PCMC commissioner. If things work out, our cycles will soon roll out on the designated cycle tracks,” said Shinde.
The cycle, which costs Rs 35,000, has an online customer base of over 9,000 people in India, claimed Shinde, adding that it was also becoming increasingly popular in Netherlands, US and Europe.
“Our products are sold online and so far, we have managed to sell as many as 4 to 5 cycles every month to Indian customers, while about 10 to 15 are exported to various parts of the world. Recently, we have tied up with 102 organic stores in the city, where the bamboo cycles will be put on sale,” informed Shinde.
The cycles are made by members of 10 agricultural families based in Velhe taluka, located about 55 km from Pune, who are involved in bamboo plantation. “We also get our raw material supplies and bamboo products from these families. They have been trained to put together these cycles, and the process takes about a week…,” said Shinde. The bamboo cycles are strong, water-resistant, lighter and durable, said Shinde, adding that the company also gives its customers an option of customising their cycles, which is available in both geared and non-geared forms.
The company’s future plans include tapping the abundantly available bamboo in Sahyadri Ranges, and adding 100 agricultural families to its manufacturing set-up.
The Pune-based company, which is currently using bamboo species Dendrocalamus strictus, is also experimenting with other available species to further reduce the weight of the cycle. “There are 136 species of bamboo and we are working on developing cycles with newer species… we aim to bring down the cycle’s weight to 1.8 kg,” said Shinde.
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