Entrepreneur turns thousands of plastic bottles into household cleaning tools each day: ‘This broom is quite solid, not easy to break’

You’ve heard about sweeping problems under the rug. Well, how about converting the problem into a broom instead?

One Cambodian entrepreneur is doing just that. In a mission to help tackle plastic pollution in his country’s capital city of Phnom Penh, 41-year-old Has Kea has started an upcycling business. In 11 months, his workers turned about 44 tons of plastic bottles into heavy-duty brooms.

According to Phnom Penh’s environmental department, as reported by Reuters, the city produces up to around 8,400 tons of single-use plastic every day, which ends up in landfills and waterways.


Kea’s business upcycles about 5,000 plastic bottles per day. His team first spins the bottles into strips, which become bristles for the brooms. The plastic strips are collected into a bundle on a machine and softened using hot water before being sewn into the ends of a bamboo stick.

Kea buys the bottles from trash collectors and garbage depots.

“This broom is quite solid, not easy to break,” Suon Kosal, a Buddhist monk whose temple bought 80 of the brooms in January, told Reuters.

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