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Sustain Weekly Newsletter-2Nov2015

By November 2, 2015 Sustain No Comments


A weekly sustainable tech newsletter from a standing desk. – Nov 2, 2015

Here are the top sustainability news I found interesting this week

In Tech News

Start you up (week’s start-up stories and insights)

Learn today

What are Microplastics?
Microplastics are small plastic materials in the environment that are between 1 and 5 mm. They are used in cosmetics, scrubs etc to scrub away dead cells. They can absorb persistent organic pollutants and get through water treatment facilities unnoticed. Consider getting cosmetics and soaps that doesn’t contain microbeads. Here is a list of products (.pdf) that contain microbeads. Start with the scrubs.


Did you know?

  • Most table salt is full of microplastics. Study in China tested quantity of microplastics in table salt from sea salt and found it to be high. Microplastics maybe also found in Shellfish.
  • China abandoned its one child policy after 35 years. Greater than 10% of population is over 65. Lots of parents going no-kid route. The intended baby boom might not happen.
  • Caffeine may help curb depression a bit. Have a cup of coffee when you feel a bit down.
  • Nail polishes could be leaching toxins into your bloodstream. Some popular nail paints contain a suspected endocrine disruptor called TPHP.
  • You shouldn’t refrigerate bread in a plastic bag. Sliced breads become hard and stale over time. Putting that in the fridge will fasten the process. A better way to do it is to buy whole loaves, cut away what you need and put the rest in an airtight container in the freezer.
  • Why a lot of people pay to get scared. Basically, it triggers great flight-or-fight response with a release of higher levels of dopamine, endorphins and adrenalin in a safe environment. Brain high. ScareHouse, a haunted house in Pittsburgh gets 3,000 customers a night in peak season before Halloween.
  • Fathers in South Korea go to a Durrano Fathers School where they learn how to hug their kids. Basically, they teach how not to be absent.

Did you read?

  • If you’re trying to be a growth hacker (a role where you multiply user growth quickly in a startup), you should try ‘Growth Hacker Marketing’ by Ryan Holiday. It’s a quick read.
India food startup update
The plight of food startups in India is worsening. End of the honeymoon period. Food and delivery startups have begun to consolidate in India.
  • Grofers acquired Spoonjoy and Townrush last week. Calling it an acqui-hire. Which means, no significant cash or equity is being exchanged.
  • TinyOwl raised $7.7 million last week. One of the few ones to get more capital. But that’s after they laid off 160 employees in Bangalore, Pune last month. This gives them a year for managing costs and make some revenue.
  • Swiggy (Bangalore) has stated that they don’t believe in a heavy discounting model. They increased delivery rates and cut down discounts. Not surprising. One way of trying to get out of a maze.
  • Most of these startups have begun to outsource last mile connectivity to delivery partners such as Roadrunnr. This helps saves hiring costs but increases vendor costs.
It’s a game of economics. If you’re a food startup, it’s better if you own the food, own the platform, own the delivery. Kind of the Apple way of doing all of the hardware, software and services.

Open Thought

Less costly and more convenient solutions cause disruption. But what creates sustenance is revenue and profitability. When startups want to uberfy, their focus should more on economics than on technology
News @Arcluster 
Arcluster has partnered with research resellers to promote its research studies to a global audience. You can now procure our latest farm drones market report from our reseller partners ResearchandMarketsand Market Publishers. We are also in talks with a couple of leading distributors to bring our studies to the Asian markets in Japan and Korea. Follow us on twitter @arcluster for latest news from the company. Subscribe to our media alerts to be informed.

Folks, that’s it for last week. Good week ahead!