Rhea Singhal is the founder and CEO of Ecoware, India’s first and largest sustainable packaging company. She is a World Economic Forum ‘Young Global Leader’ and has recently been honoured with The Nari Shakti Puraskar, the highest civilian honour for women in India.
Rhea was previously a senior sales executive in the Oncology team at Pfizer UK and after moving to India, she founded Ecoware with the sole aim of improving India’s plastic menace. Ecoware disrupted the food packing industry by introducing a fully compostable alternative to plastic and styrofoam. Ecoware is made from the waste of common agricultural crops that would otherwise be burnt in the open, contributing to severe air pollution.
Rhea has created social awareness by educating consumers and encouraging change in consumer behaviour. Her awareness strategy includes working with various institutions such as schools and hospitals, where the toxicity of plastics have been highlighted and healthier alternatives are discussed. Ecoware has started to eliminate plastic waste from India and better the health of all, especially women and children.
Her challenges included setting up a consumer business, overcoming the stigma associated with being a female business owner and being a foreigner who spoke very little Hindi. Despite these hurdles she convinced generational traders across India to sell a product they had never seen and that cannibalised their current revenue. One of her greatest successes has been convincing the Indian Railways, the largest food service operator in India, to switch to biodegradable.
Rhea Singhal has been featured in various publications – Forbes, Hindustan Times, Economic Times, India Today and CNBC. She is a recognised leader in a number of fields ranging from Circular Economy and Sustainable Packaging, to Climate Change. As a mother to two young children, Rhea knows first-hand the harmful impact of pollution on the most vulnerable and this is her constant motivation to do better.
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