Awareness about usage of Single Use plastic In India

Report Submitted by- Saurabh Jadhav ( Market research intern at footprint)


My name is Saurabh Rajendra Jadhav I am belonging to Nashik (Maharashtra), I am currently pursuing MMS from marketing branch from Mumbai University. I undertook this internship project and completed the internship report under the guidance of Mr. Darshan and Tarumitra organization. I’m grateful to the all Tarumitra staff for their patience and assistance during my internship. It was a good learning experience for me to work with their market research division, as the project involved many innovative marketing and research practices.

Information about the internship position

I joined footprint for an internship program in the capacity of a market research intern. While the central focus was on understand public perception of single sue plastic.

Description of the internship experience

As an intern in the market research of Tarumitra, I got a list of tasks to complete every day. To get the marketing initiative started, I had to research about habits and awareness about usage of single use plastic with on almost a daily basis. In this internship I made a survey questionnaires’ and asked to the common people about their understanding, perception, behavior, and habits about the usage of single use plastic. Also I met some people and persuade their mind to use less plastic and plant more and more trees in your surrounding and maintain hygiene in your

The tasks I undertook included:

1. Practice Eco bricking and promote it in your community, locality, and institutions you are engaged with (studying in).

2. Design Questionnaire for research to understand public behavior, habits, and awareness on single-use plastic.

 3. Conduct at least 10 high resolution video interviews with respondents and upload it on YouTube.

 4. Conducting online/offline/ survey, from various socioeconomic segments of society.

 5. Assess the amount of single-use plastic generated at different locations of the city.


From my internship at Tarumitra, I was able to get a better understanding of how the market research works and how effective it is. I enjoyed working with the Tarumitra team to devise and implement different research strategies. However, I still have a long way to go in understanding the psychological aspects of marketing and research, and I need to build up my public speaking skills as well.

Overall, I found the market research internship experience to be positive, and I’m sure I will be able to use the skills I learned in my career later.

Public perception and awareness about Single use plastic pollution in India

Market Research Intern at Footprint (Tarumitra)


  • SUPs doubled as the amount in 2000, with packaging is the highest portion (40%).
  • Land filling accounts for >40% and is presently the dominant disposal method.
  • SUP wastes leaking into the environment have adverse impacts on ecology.
  • Multi-solution strategies are the most effective way to stop SUP pollution.


Single-use plastics (SUPs), invented for the modern “throwaway society,” are intended to be used just one occasion. They are being increasingly produced and used globally, most notably as packaging or consumables, like SUP shopping bags or disposable tableware. We discuss how most SUPs are landfilled or incinerated, which causes pollution, consumes valuable land, and squanders limited natural resources. Only relatively small amounts are currently recycled, a hindrance to the concept of a circular economy. Moreover, SUP litter aggregation within the natural environment may be a major concern. This report briefly reviews SUP contamination in various environmental media including soil, rivers, lakes and oceans round the world. Within the face of mounting evidence regarding the threat posed to plant growth, soil invertebrates and other land animals, (sea) birds, and marine ecosystems, there’s a growing push to attenuate SUPs. Regulatory tools and voluntary actions to scale back SUP usages are suggests, with some suggestions for minimizing SUP waste.


A straw with our iced coffee, a plastic bag to carry our takeout, and a wrapper on a candy bar: taken individually, each seems harmless. These modern conveniences are so ubiquitous—and so quickly thrown out—that they hardly register in our minds. But single-use plastics come with a steep environmental price—one that we’ll be paying off for millennia. Our plastic addiction is having a devastating impact on our oceans, our wildlife, and our health.

What is single use plastic?

Put simply, single-use plastics are goods that are made primarily from fossil fuel–based chemicals (petrochemicals) and are meant to be disposed of right after use—often, in mere minutes. Single-use plastics are most commonly used for packaging and service ware, such as bottles, wrappers, straws, and bags.

Though plastic—a chain of synthetic polymers, essentially—was invented in the mid-19th century, it wasn’t until the 1970s that its popularity skyrocketed. Manufacturers began replacing traditionally paper or glass staples with lighter or more durable and affordable plastic alternatives; plastic jugs replaced milk jars, for instance. Since the 1950s, 8.3 billion metric tons of plastics have been produced, and half of that in the past 15 years alone.

There are many uses for plastic that are not only reasonable but important, such as surgical gloves, or straws for people with disabilities. But these cases make up a small fraction of single-use plastic. According to a 2017 study, more than half of non-fiber plastic, which excludes synthetic fabrics like polyester and nylon, comes from plastic packaging alone, much of which is for single-use items.

Why Single use plastic is bad?

Single-use plastics are a glaring example of the problems with throwaway culture. Instead of investing in quality goods that will last, we often prioritize convenience over durability and consideration of long-term impacts. Our reliance on these plastics means we are accumulating waste at a staggering rate. We produce 300 million tons of plastic each year worldwide, half of which is for single-use items. That’s nearly equivalent to the weight of the entire human population.

Reducing plastic use is the most effective means of avoiding this waste (and the impacts linked to plastic production and use). Carrying reusable bags and bottles is one great way to avoid single-use plastics in our day-to-day lives; more on preventing plastic waste can be found below.

Recycling more plastic, more frequently, reduces its footprint. Polyethylene terephthalate, one of the most commonly recycled plastics and the material that makes up most water and soda bottles, can be turned into everything from polyester fabric to automotive parts. But a whopping 91 percent of all plastic isn’t recycled at all. Instead it ends up in landfills or in the environment. Single-use plastics in particular—especially small items like straws, bags, and cutlery—are traditionally hard to recycle because they fall into the crevices of recycling machinery and therefore are often not accepted by recycling centers.

Left alone, plastics don’t really break down; they just break up. Over time, sun and heat slowly turn plastics into smaller and smaller pieces until they eventually become what are known as micro plastics. These microscopic plastic fragments, no more than 5 millimeters long, are hard to detect—and are just about everywhere. Some micro plastics are even small by design, like the micro beads used in facial scrubs or the microfibers in polyester clothing. They end up in the water, eaten by wildlife, and inside our bodies. They’ve even made their way up to the secluded Pyrenees mountain range and down to the bottom of the Mariana Trench. For wildlife, micro plastics can be particularly dangerous; when eaten they can easily accumulate inside an animal’s body and cause health issues, like punctured organs or fatal intestinal blockages.

Single-Use Plastics and Pollution

Although single-use plastic pollution accumulates most visibly on our streets, in fact our water suffers even more. Litter can be the first stage in a waste stream that enters waterways as plastics tossed on the street are washed away by rain or travel via storm drains into rivers and streams. Our waterway plastic pollution is particularly concentrated: Just ten rivers carry 93 percent of the world’s total amount of plastic that enters the oceans via rivers each year.

In 2015 researchers from the University of Georgia estimated that between 4.8 million and 12.7 million metric tons of plastic per year make their way into the oceans via people living within 30 miles of a coast. The majority of this pollution—dominated by single-use plastic waste—comes from countries lacking infrastructure to properly manage waste, particularly in Asia. India, for example, generates 25,940 tons of plastic waste every day but collects only 60 percent of it. (It’s also important to remember that waste management is just one part of the global materials cycle. For instance, a lot of the plastic produced in Asian countries is for products that serve U.S. demand—and the United States often sends plastic waste back to these countries for recycling.).

2.0 Methodology

2.1 Study area

We have collected the responses from the people of different Indian states such as;

Maharashtra, tamilnadu, west Bengal, Bihar etc.

2.2 Data collection

Data for this study was collected using a questionnaire as the main research instrument. Primary data was collected through the administration of questionnaires to the local people to gain an understanding of their perceptions towards single use plastic pollution. The questionnaire was the most suitable instrument to use because the information required was brief and uncontroversial. The research required standardized data and the questionnaire allowed respondents to quickly and easily understand the questions, which allowed for efficient data collection.

At the beginning, the questionnaire instructions were given to the respondents including the purpose and description of the research. The participants were also given a confidentiality statement to ensure the anonymity of their responses. The respondents were able to receive assistance from the researcher if they had any questions or needed clarification on any of the questions. Even though the questionnaire was in English, explanations of the questions were given in their native languages, whenever necessary  To avoid the respondents losing interest and make them easily understandable, survey questions were formulated as brief as possible.

2.3. Sampling Strategy

1. Information is collected from a group of people

2. The main way in which the information is collected is through asking questions.

 3. Information is collected from a sample rather than from every member of the population.

4. Participants were chosen on a random basis using systematic sampling whereby every random person who walked past the researcher (in the relevant areas) were asked to participate in the survey. This thereby reduced the bias in the selection of participants for the study.

3. Results and Discussion

 3.1. Demographics of Respondents

There were total of 79 respondents participated in the questionnaire process, from the different parts of the country were selected. All 79 respondents were Indian citizens. Information pertaining to the demographics of the sample population was collected to gain a clear understanding of the sample population characteristics. It asserts that it’s important to understand the characteristics and demographics of the sample population of the research study because it is an influential factor manipulating the willingness of participants to respond and, more importantly, it can impact how the participants respond to the chosen questions. The questionnaire in the study focused on four characteristics of the sample population; namely gender, age, education level and employment status; the results of which can be seen in Table 1.

3.2 knowledge about single use plastic

This mainly dealt with understanding the respondents’

Familiarity with Indian plastic usage waste. The Results are given below.

Figure provides and insight on the types of plastic pollution they are aware of or they have practicing.

Almost all of the respondents  33 (41.8%) are aware or they Have a renowned knowledge of single use plastic. 28 (35.4)% of

The respondents were familiar with single use plastic. Whilst 8 (10.1) % have never heard about single use plastic. And 10 (12.7%) of respondent don’t know what single use plastic is which is known by any respondent who participated in the survey.

3.3 Peoples opinion about single use plastic.

Scientists expect the ozone layer to fully recover by 2070, when the polluting substances are finally gone. If we stop producing problematic plastics now, plastic will still be in our oceans by at least 2520, but less of it. Every day without a ban creates tones of pollution.

So, we asked people about to state their individual opinion about single use plastic, the responses were like, 9 (11.4%) out of 79 people said I will continue to use it, as I don’t have other option. 10 (12.7%) of people said I will never use single use plastic again.57 (72.2%) said I will try to bring less plastic in my house. And 3 (3.8%) people said I will collect and sell it to local recycler.

3.4 individuals’ willingness to curb the usage of single use plastic

Reducing the use of plastic is important because plastic production requires an enormous amount of energy and resources. This causes carbon emissions and contributes to global warming. Recycling plastic is not efficient – only 9% of plastic ever produced has been recycled. About 60% is discarded in landfills and oceans. There, it stays for thousands of years, transforming into “micro plastic,” leaching into our water supplies and food.

The indiscriminate use of plastic has caused us enough harm, and action simply has to be taken. On this, there is no doubt. How well the objective is achieved would depend on how well we combine coaxing with coercion to wean the world off plastic.

Hence, we asked people about what they can do to minimize the usage of plastic so, they are also in a favor to not to use plastic and also assured will not use plastic or try to minimize the usage of plastic in near future.

3.5 Alternatives of single use plastic

In our plastic-filled world, avoiding plastic can be pretty challenging. But finding alternatives to common items like plastic bottles and plastic packaging is becoming increasingly easier—and not a moment too soon for our plastic-choked planet.

  1. Natural fiber cloth

Natural cloth can replace plastic bags. Sustainable clothing made from organic cotton, wool, hemp, or bamboo won’t shed plastic fibers when washed. Felted or recycled wool is a versatile, safe, and compostable material for children’s toys, household containers, and more.

  • Bamboo

This fast-growing renewable resource can replace plastic in items like tableware and drinking straws. It is lightweight, durable, and compostable.

  • Cardboard

Cardboard is fully compostable at home as long as it’s not coated in, you guessed it, plastic. Many companies are now packaging their products in plain cardboard to cut down on waste. You can also use cardboard boxes to replace storage containers in your home.

Keep in mind that anything you buy has an environmental footprint. Though longer lasting than plastic, things made from glass, metal, and so on still take energy to make and transport. For these swaps to make sense, you need to use them over and over and over again. Buying well-made, durable products will help ensure you get the most use from whatever you choose.

  1. Conclusion and recommendation

This research report discovered there to be a for the most part more negative discernment towards single-use plastics and a moderately high attention to the ecological effects brought about by them. Systems, for example, boosting the utilization of reusable sacks, advancing schooling and mindfulness, actualizing arrangements to execute a plastic boycott ought to be considered in India to diminish the issues of single-utilize plastic contamination in the overall

conditions of India. A large number of the arrangements are pragmatic and could assume a part in lessening the utilization of single-utilize plastic and furthermore limit the commonness of plastic. Central territories incorporate boosting the utilization of reusable shopping packs; using well known media stages to bring issues to light of plastic contamination, advancing reusing society, and further researching the capability of a plastic boycott in India.

Endeavors ought to be made to offer monetary motivations to clients for utilizing reusable shopping sacks. Offering impetuses may incite a conduct change in people that decreases the utilization of single-use plastics. Powerful impetuses might be through contribution unwaveringness focuses or limits on complete buys when utilizing reusable shopping packs in store. Also, it is recommended that options, for example, paper, material or some other substances to be utilized rather than plastics ought to be sold at an entirely sensible cost so everybody could bear the cost of it. This could permit utilization practices to move away from a direct and towards roundabout model.

One of the biggest challenges associated with the plastic ban is the absence/unavailability of alternatives, which are cost-effective. It is therefore recommended that a corresponding analysis if viable alternatives to plastics should be researched.


 I would like to thank the respondents who willingly participated in the questionnaire survey. In addition, I also would like to show my gratitude towards Footprint, Tarumitra Organization and Darshan sir for giving me a chance to educating and learning valuable insights.


1) Did you hear the word Solid Waste Management (SWM)?

  1. Yes

  2. No

  3. Yes, but no idea about that just hears the word.

2).In your institutions either school or college conducts any Awareness campaign about solid waste management (SWM)?

1. No

2. Yes

3).Only studies apart from that nothing.

In your area municipalities collect the waste at least once a week or not?

1. Yes

2. No

4) Give your suggestions about solid waste management (SWM) .

5) Do you burn garbage?

 1. Yes

 2. No

6). Does your city have dustbins placed on roads?

 1. Yes

  2. No

7) Do the stores near you use plastic bags or cloth/ paper bags for carrying the items purchased?

8). Do you practice any type of recycling at residence/office?

9). How far is the nearest waste collection point / site from your Residence?

10). Do you believe plastic pollution is bad for….?

11). in your opinion what do you think needs improving on the most in order to cut down on using plastic?

12). Do you avail door to door waste pickup facility?



Saurabh Jadhav
Author: Saurabh Jadhav

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