Indo Count place top priority on sustainability

Indo Count place top priority on sustainability

Businesses can make a huge impact towards the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals and the good news is that this isn’t just good for humanity, it’s good for business too, explains K K Lalpuria.

Indo Count Industries (ICIL) is globally the leading end-to-end bedding providers from India with over three decades of experience in the Textile industry segment. The company has a wide-ranging product portfolio, which exclusively focuses on creating all-encompassing sleep experiences.

A sustainable competitive advantage is the backbone of most businesses that are thriving today. Businesses that have understood this and followed a sustainable competitive advantage strategy have remained as market leaders in their sector for a long time.

We as an organisation are mindful of the fast-diminishing natural resources and are aware of the fact that we are borrowing our survival from the next generations with every passing day on this blue planet. The over-dependence of the human race on finite resources has caused depletion of the natural resources at an unprecedented pace never imagined. We are both concerned and careful as a business entity to reduce our dependence on finite natural resources by making astute decisions and implementing our plans to optimally use natural resources.

In this context, aligning our sustainability indicators with United Nations 17 SDG’s (Sustainable Development Goals) we have joined UNGC as a member since past couple of years and simultaneously have identified 7 SDG’s relevant to our business for aligning them to our performance metrics.

The Sustainable Development Goals provide a comprehensive framework for the world to work together to create a better future. Businesses can make a huge impact towards the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals and the good news is that this isn’t just good for humanity, it’s good for business too. It ensures to take care of 3P’s – Planet, People & Prosperity.


Since the Industrial Revolution, companies and consumers have largely adhered to a linear model of value creation that begins with extraction and concludes with end-of-life disposal. Resources are acquired, processed using energy and labor, and sold as goods—with the expectation that customers will discard those goods and buy more. Contemporary trends, however, have exposed the wastefulness of such take–make–dispose systems. The same trends have also made it practical to conserve assets and materials so maximum value can be derived from them.

We are tackling this situation by actively involving our design, procurement, marketing, R&D teams to contribute in developing products which are always sustainable, have increased life cycle and surely must generate the least or no waste. We also keep a track of packaging material that goes with the consumer to their home for customers and work towards reducing it.

Increased emphasis has been given in our discussion & meetings with customers for using “Recycled/Recyclable” category of products which are now being embraced by customers although not at expected pace. Customers are being shared with the importance and benefits of this circular economy and products are promoted in numerous advertisements and market events to make customers aware about their contribution to this planet by making right selection of products.

Focusing on energy efficiency

We believe that alternative energy/renewable energy is the future for business sustainability. With depleting fossil fuels, heightened levels of air pollutions, and threats posed by climate change, we are determined to reduce our energy dependency on conventional sources and steadily move towards renewable sources. With this drive, we have taken several initiatives that would help us successfully transit into green power reliability in the future.

Water conservation

Our business is driven by the philosophy of careful utilisation of finite natural resources and protection of the same. Our water policy clearly articulates our commitment towards optimally using the water resources by bringing in a reduction in water consumption by increasing wastewater recycling, reusing and rainwater harvesting.
More than 94 per cent of our processed water is recovered and reused through the best in class set-up at ETP & RO.
Being consistent with our mindset of care for water, we have implemented a large number of initiatives (including technological upgradation) at our manufacturing plants.
Waste management
Waste and effluent management is a burning issue in today’s world. Unscientific waste and effluent management is a threat to the environment as well as to humankind overall. We at ICIL recognise this fact to the core and hence we attach serious importance to managing textile waste and effluent generated at our facilities. Our philosophy is deeply rooted in avoidance, reduction, and recycling of waste and process effluent.
Project Gagan :  Expanding horizons
The sustainability of the overall textile sector is dependent on farmers growing both quality and quantity of cotton. As a response to this living truth, we began an initiative to improve sustainability in cotton farming for farmers in Warora Taluka of Chandrapur District in Maharashtra state in 2018-19. This program has been named ‘GAGAN’. This initiative started with the aim of covering 1,500 farmers in 10 villages, to begin with, and we envisaged increasing the scope of this program to 30 villages, thus helping close to 4,500 farmers in the following years. We formed a partnership with CITI-CDRA, a technical resource agency in the field of cotton production, and engaged agri-graduates as scouts from local areas to implement this program. The main thrust of this program is to help cotton farmers in increasing the productivity of their farms by judicious use of water, pesticides, and fertilizers. Further, some of the important objectives of project GAGAN are Backward Integration from Farm to Fashion, Promotion of Better Cotton Initiative (BCI), along with a secured, traceable supply chain.
Further, considering the scale of capex involved, our projects & actions are being approached in a two-pronged way – short term & long term projects.
Under Short-term we have taken actions like “improvised our lighting system across the manufacturing units from conventional lighting to LED based lighting system, we have upgraded our Compressors/pumps/motors to reduce energy consumption, optimising fuel to steam ratios, optimised usage of resources etc. All these contributed to significant reduction in Scope 1 & Scope 2 emissions.
Under Long-term we are forecasting the future trends and working on larger capex projects like changeover of complete electricity sourced from non-renewable to 100 per cent renewable sources of electricity like from solar & wind energy. In this direction, we already have taken steps and installed close to 3 MW of solar plants on our factories roof top in past few years. This has reduced our Scope 2 emissions considerably. 
We also have future plans in place to make our electricity consumption 100 per cent on renewable resources by the year 2030 in a phased manner. We are working towards our dream to make our processing unit ZLD (Zero Liquid Discharge) by 2030.
At national & international levels, we participate and share our sustainability performance at global level platforms like CDP (Carbon Disclosure Project), HIGG Index (Sustainable Apparel Coalition), Walmart’s Global Project “Gigaton”, ZDHC (Zero Discharge of Hazardous Chemicals) etc.  Also, as we are an active member at UNGC (United Nations Global Compact), we do participate in international, national & state level sustainability events. Very recently, we have been recognised by CII (Confederation of Indian Industry) for our contribution towards “Excellence in Water Management” at New Delhi.
We believe Sustainable competitiveness is the ability to build a framework (policies, regulations, management tools, and visions) that allows a firm, a sector, an individual or a country to sustain or increase the ability to provide income in relation to the current and future wider environment and society.
With these actions in place we are sure to achieve our targets defined for 2030.
Expansion plans
It is increasingly evident that enduring commercial success is linked to a commitment to sustainable development. To fully benefit from this association, businesses need to encapsulate it in a clear purpose. That purpose should be compatible with the Sustainable Development Goals and needs to shape the way the business is both designed and run. We call this 2030 purpose at Indo Count.
In this aspect, Indo Count has taken a scientific approach and adopted SBTi’s (Science Based Target Initiatives) model for defining 2030 targets from our baseline of 2018. In alignment with Paris agreement to achieve Well Below 2 degree celsius, we have identified required reduction path we need to achieve in our GHG emissions reduction plan.
Welcoming the shared responsibility for this planet, we have taken targets of reducing 33 per cent GHG Emissions in Scope 1, 2 & 15 per cent reduction in Scope 3 by the year 2030.
Addition to emissions reduction, we have taken targets across other sustainability areas like Tree Plantation, CSR activities, providing free medical facilities in our region and many more.
We have woven the philosophy of ‘Minimalism’ into our strategy and have added a tinge of innovation in our approaches to our energy consumption practices. Not only did we install latest energy-efficient technology machines at our sites, but also materialized every possible opportunity to harness sunlight and tap the ‘Sun Power’. Our sincere efforts concerning a reduction in our energy consumption and aspirations towards migrating to the adoption of renewable energy are narrated below.
About the author:
K R Lalpuria is the Executive Director & CEO of Indi Count Industries. He is a Science graduate from St Xavier’s College in Mumbai and has more than 39 years of experience in the Textile Sector. He held senior & board positions in Companies like Welspun, Bombay Dyeing, Pratibha Syntex, before joining Indo Count Industries.
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