Solution Overview & Team Lead Details

Solution name.

Green Venture Tanzania

Provide a one-line summary of your solution.

Green Ventures is a recycling and manufacturing company that transforms plastic waste into sustainable lumber and modern handcrafted recycled furniture in Tanzania. 

What specific problem are you trying to solve?

According to the United Nations report for plastic pollution in Tanzania by 2021, the country had a 96% of plastic mismanagement and only 0.5% rate for domestic recycling. This is a huge opportunity for us as that gives us enough plastics to recycle and also provides an alternative to wood-sourced materials which contribute to reducing deforestation while keeping the streets clean from plastics.. 

On the other hand, there is a huge increase in plastic waste that comes from electronic materials such as computers and other types of electronic packaging. This waste increase exponentially as the population in Tanzania experience technological advancement. At green venture, we are aiming to increase the recycling of plastic waste at a faster rate as technology is growing exponentially. 

We are already selling our products to customers in different cities such as Dar es Salaam which is the fastest growing region in the country, Morogoro, Zanzibar island, and exported to our neighboring country Kenya. This indicates a lucrative market and we are positioning to fulfill the demand throughout Africa.

Given we are the first, we anticipate using our first-movers advantage to secure a sizable share of the lumber industry on the continent of Africa over the next 3 to 5 years.

Elevator pitch

What is your solution?

Green Ventures recycles plastic waste by transforming it into high-quality sustainable lumber at competitive market prices.  

We use a plastic extrusion process where plastic is sorted and then put into an extruder machine which is heated and then injected into molds of different shapes and sizes which are later cooled the planks are used to create handcraft furniture by carpenters and some planks are used directly into the construction.

We work with more than 130 freelance plastic waste collectors to retrieve plastic waste from rivers, landfills, homes, and many more. This process of capturing the trash is done at $0.5 per kilogram of plastic. Once we have the trash at our plant, it is then transformed into high-quality eco-friendly lumber which is used in construction. About 50% of the planks are turned into handcrafted furniture by our carpenters. We produce 60 planks per day which is about 500 kilograms of plastic waste every day. Summing up to 15 tons of plastic per month our business recaptures. 

Who does your solution serve? In what ways will the solution impact their lives?

At Green venture, we have categorized our beneficiaries in two groups.

Waste collectors; we work with more than 100 freelance marginalized waste collectors who collect plastic waste around Arusha, from landfills, markets, streets, and even households. We pay these waste collectors with kilograms of waste that they sell to us and this is how they get to earn their living. We also provide them with training to enable them to sort plastic waste and also work in better conditions and receive reasonable pay. 

Our customers: we have been able to create recycled materials that have helped a wide range of fields example, farmers have purchased plastic recycled fencing posts that are water resistant, termite resistant, and maintenance free saving them money. Likewise, we have been able to create indoor and outdoor furniture that people have used in their gardens without fear of rain or any form of insects and without compromising the appearance of the products. 

How are you and your team well-positioned to deliver this solution?

Edgar Tarimo, Founder & CEO. Currently an undergraduate student at Whitman College in Washington, USA majoring in Environmental Studies with a passion for the environment dating back to when I was 15 years old. As a citizen of this world, I have dedicated my life to solving the pressing climate issues from the recycling and value creation angle. 

Tchofor Dick Nchang is currently a Quantitative Economics Major at St. Olaf College in Minnesota. He comes with experience in building relationships and forging partnerships that have unlocked value across a wide variety of sectors such as agriculture, nutrition, and healthcare. 

Fahad Faud CMO: Fahad has many years of experience on being a travel content creator in Tanzania and founded companies such as Unzip Tanzania. He has also worked with bigger brands such as Coca-Cola. 

What steps have you taken to understand the needs of the population you want to serve?

I have spent over five years perfecting the craft of converting plastic waste into lumber used for the construction of homes and the creation of beautiful handcrafted indoor and outdoor furniture. In this way, we not only provide people with living spaces but also provide them with recycled furniture such as beds, tables, chairs, and even outdoor furniture all from recycled plastic waste, and this, in general, creates what we call a sustainable home.

We have been able to partner with companies such as split vision Sweden which is an industrial design company and we have used their experience to better our production system we have also done research with Twende innovation center which is a local innovation workshop in Arusha Tanzania developing local solutions. 

Which aspects of the Challenge does your solution most closely address?

Taking action to combat climate change and its impacts (Sustainability)

What is your solution’s stage of development?

Growth: An organization with an established product, service, or business model rolled out in at least one community, which is poised for further growth

In what city, town, or region is your solution team located?

Arusha, Tanzania

Who is the Team Lead for your solution?

Edgar Edmund Tarimo

More About Your Solution

What makes your solution innovative?

At Green venture, we have decided to transform recycling and make products that not only save the environment but also meet customers' needs such as durability, excellent appearance, and monetary value. We have been able to do this by combining recycled planks with carpentry knowledge therefore carpenters who use to make furniture out of wood are now able to make even more sustainable furniture with our recycled materials using some of the woodworking experience that they have developed over years too produce high quality handcrafted detailed furniture from plastic recycled planks. 

What are your impact goals for the next year, and how will you achieve them?

by next year we are looking forward to doubling our current production capacity by increasing our machinery and also employing more people. therefore we are looking forward to having a capacity of recycling 1000 kilograms of plastics daily and providing partime employment to over 200 plastic waste collectors. 

on the other hand, we are looking to create our first recycled furniture showroom in Arusha Tanzania that will showcase our products and promote sustainability in the furniture-making industry by increasing the visibility and accessibility of recycled materials in the market. 

We are also looking forward to expanding our activities to Dar es salaam and Zanzibar which both are cities that are bordered by the Indian ocean so that we can be able to recycle more plastics that can be found in beach areas and help to stop marine pollution. 

Describe the core technology that powers your solution.

For our production cycle we combine several processes including extrusion, injection molding, and compression molding through this we are able to recycle plastics according to their characteristics and maintain things such as color and strength without having additives in them. 

After making these beams we do not end there, now we use combine traditional processes such as carving and molding techniques to create furniture with better details and appearance. 

With the combination of modern plastic recycling technology and long-term traditional carpentry process, we are able to deliver what the community needs in a more sustainable and durable way. 

Please select the technologies currently used in your solution:

  • Ancestral Technology & Practices
  • Behavioral Technology
  • Manufacturing Technology
  • Materials Science

In which countries do you currently operate?

  • Tanzania

How many people does your solution currently serve, and how many do you plan to serve in the next year? If you haven’t yet launched your solution, tell us how many people you plan to serve in the next year.

currently, we have created 9 full-time jobs and about 130 part-time jobs, we are looking forward to creating about 15 fulltime jobs and 200 part-time jobs to waste collectors in the next years. 

What barriers currently exist for you to accomplish your goals in the next year?

Despite making a profit from our current modal, the profit we make is not enough for us to expand organically therefore for our expansion to happen in the coming year we require external financing which will enable us to purchase more equipment and also increase our capacity of work and raw material collection. 

Due to poor waste management in Tanzania, there is no formal plastic waste market, causing the prices of plastic waste to fluctuate thereby affecting our cost of production. To mitigate this problem, we have planned to establish collection centers where people will be able to sell plastic waste at a standardized price which will able enable the sellers to protect their margins. 

Your Team

How many people work on your solution team?

9 full time workers and 130 partime workers

How long have you been working on your solution?

7 years

What organizations do you currently partner with, if any? How are you working with them?

Split vision Sweden, is an industrial design company that helps its clients initiate the move out of the linear economy and towards a sustainable, circular one split vision has helped green venture Tanzania in developing and improving our extrusion process. 

Twende innovation center is a company that accelerates local solutions for local problems. they have enabled us to use their innovative resources and space.

Segal family foundation, support community-based organizations with the localized knowledge needed to create sustainable change in their communities

Business Model

What is your business model?

We purchase plastic waste from over 130 freelance plastic waste collectors in Arusha, Tanzania where we pay them per kilogram. We likewise receive plastic waste from households and other manufacturing companies. We then process this plastic waste into plastic planks that can be used in construction and also furniture making. We make money by selling the planks to construction companies but also the other way we make money is using the planks to make our furniture product that we sell directly to the customer. Over the last year we were able to make over 40000 USD in revenue from our sales .

We sell our products directly from our manufacturing place through our own wholesale and retail outlets. Likewise, we sell our products through contractors who later provide them to their own clients. A good example is A Singing Grass, a company that operates in the Serengeti National Park. They purchase our planks and use them in making decks for camping sites in the national park. However, some of the customers come straight to our production center to buy products.

What is your path to financial sustainability?

We are planning to be sustainable through selling products and making sales, whereby the business becomes profitable and can reinvest to ensure growth, however, we are also looking to utilize grants and investment to make our growth even faster as we have more demand for our products that the capacity in which we can supply in our community. 

Therefore I would say that more of a combined approach between sales, grant, and investment will help to see the company expands quickly and also go to the larger market to serve more people who demand our products but also recycle more plastic waste and reduce deforestation.

Solution Team

  • Edgar Edmund Founder Green Venture Tanzania , Green Venture Tanzania
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