Octopus, the 'One Stop Solution' App to Overcome Garbage Problems

Sep 27, 2021

Octopus, the 'One Stop Solution' App to Overcome Garbage Problems

WASTE is still a classic problem in Indonesia and has not been managed optimally. Data from the Ministry of Environment and Forestry stated that there were around 67.8 million tons of waste in 2020.


Meanwhile, The National Plastic Action Partnership (NPAP) said that around 4.8 million tons of plastic waste per year in Indonesia is not managed properly, such as being burned in open spaces (48%), not properly managed in official landfills (13%) and the rest pollutes waterways and the sea (9%).


The amount of plastic waste production in Indonesia shows an increasing trend of 5% every year.


The LIPI survey on April 20–May 5, 2020 stated that people's online shopping activities increased by 62% during the pandemic, where up to 96% of the total number of packages used tape, plastic wrap, and bubble wrap.


It also increases the problem of waste, which usually ends up in landfills (TPA). In fact, waste can be managed and utilized, it can even have high economic value if it is treated properly from the start, starting from the household. For this reason, Octopus is here to provide a solution to the problem of post-consumed waste.


According to Octopus Co-Founder, Hamish Daud, this application was formed to help solve the waste problem, which allows users or consumers to send used packaging to be recycled into products that are worth selling.


"We provide pick-up services for post-consumption packaging through the Octopus application," he explained.


"Our dream is for Octopus to be the most effective solution for the industry in overcoming the problem of supplying recycled materials," said Hamish.


Hamish, who acts as Octopus' Chief of Partnership, explained that Octopus has three mobile apps, namely for Users (consumers), Pelestari (waste collectors), and Checkpoints (Usaha Buying and Selling Used Packaging).


"These three applications have synergized very well," he said.


Hamish added, Octopus provides useful data for the FMCG (Fast Moving Consumer Goods) industry, as well as providing solutions for the packaging industry. Because it has three mobile apps that synergize three parties, Octopus is believed to have added value for all stakeholders involved.


Hamish further explained, the three Octopus applications have working mechanisms according to the target users, namely:

First, application for customers or consumers (housewives/community) who will collect packaging waste and submit it to conservationists (scavengers) by getting incentives according to the value of the collected waste.

Second, applications for conservationists, who will collect goods from consumers and then sell them to checkpoints.

Third, application for checkpoints (garbage bank/collector). This party will buy waste from conservationists and sell it to Industries that have collaborated with Octopus.


Furthermore, Hamish said, the majority of these conservationists used to be scavengers who were given training on how to use the application and identify packaging waste in accordance with the recycling industry standards.


In addition to scavengers, there are also many students, victims of layoffs due to the Covid-19 pandemic, and online motorcycle taxi drivers who are unable to pay motorbike installments due to sluggish orders in the midst of the corona virus outbreak who are now joining as conservationists.


“Conservatives work free hours. Whenever they want to work, they just have to turn on the application and then respond to requests from Octopus users who want to send their recycled packaging," added Hamish.


Hamish tells how Octopus can change the lives of those involved. Mhilina is a hotel employee in Makassar.


He lost his job due to the Covid-19 situation. After months of unemployment, this woman heard about Octopus and joined as a conservationist. In the 4th month, he earns IDR 4 million per month.


Meanwhile, before joining Octopus, Rosmini was already running her own garbage collection business. The cash flow is chaotic and the profit is only 3-5%.


He heard that there was a new app that could help him run a business.


Immediately after joining Octopus, he can track every transaction and monitor every stock item in his collection point.


Currently Rosmini has a profit margin of 10-12% per month, she also gets a capital loan from a bank to expand her business and can buy more post-consumption products from conservationists.


Hamish added that the Octopus application also includes ways to manage certain waste, such as used diapers, glass, and so on. "We help consumers to change their lifestyle," he said.


In order to attract young millennials to join in managing waste through Octopus, this application has collaborated with other parties that are relevant to the current lifestyle.


"Now we are collaborating with Kopi Soe, MSMEs, as well as a number of popular places in Bali," he explained.


Shortly after being formed, Octopus has attracted the attention of a number of multinational companies, from the packaging industry to FMCG brands.


By the end of 2021, Hamish said, Octopus hopes to manage 1 billion post-consumed products (packaging waste that has been used by consumers) into materials that can be recycled and reused (generally consisting of plastic bottles or packaging paper).


In order to expand its reach in waste management solutions, Octopus is also collaborating with the government. "Currently we are partnering with the Province of West Java and the Coordinating Ministry for Maritime Affairs and Investment," explained Hamish.


Hamish invites all stakeholders to join Octopus and together solve the waste problem.


“It is very easy to join our ecosystem if you want to contribute to preserving nature. There are incentives for users and better income for conservationists, and help empower conservationists to enjoy a better life with their families," concluded Hamish.


by Media Indonesia