21 November 2018

Table of Contents for Matvantage

Interaction- Anup Mathew, Sr VP & Business Head, Godrej Construction

We have always believed in preserving the environment and promoting sustainable development


Godrej Construction has been one of the leaders in construction materials and leasing state-of-the-art commercial real estate. The company offers a wide range of construction materials which include specially engineered ready mix concrete products, AAC blocks, recycled concrete blocks and pavers for different types of applications. ANUP MATHEW, SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT AND BUSINESS HEAD, GODREJ CONSTRUCTION in an interaction with CONSTRUCTION OPPORTUNITIES offers his views on the products offered by the company, developments in the concrete industry and the future of the industry.



What prompted your company to foray in to recycled concrete? Please provide us details regards to your manufacturing facilities, capacities and locations.


In India, while the development projects are growing significantly, some of the undesirable impact of the construction sector activities on the environment has also amplified. India is among the top 10 countries in the world generating the highest amount of municipal solid waste. One of the main challenges is that approximately 70-75 per cent of this waste remains untreated. One such waste is the concrete waste generated from demolition of building structures. Recycling such concrete waste has several benefits that make it a more attractive option considering increasing environmental awareness, stringent environmental laws and the growing need to build in a more sustainable manner. Godrej Construction, a business unit of Godrej & Boyce saw an opportunity to create a new offering that has a positive ecological impact and decided to venture into the business of Recycled Concrete Materials (RCM). Godrej Construction is committed to developing products with a lower ecological footprint. Itis one of thefirst organised private players in India to invest in state of the art machinery that recycles concrete debris into concrete products such as blocks and pavers. These products meet the codal requirements and match the strength of concrete manufactured using virgin stone aggregates from quarries.


Godrej Construction has set up a fully automated manufacturing plant for recycled concrete blocks and pavers in Vikhroli, Mumbai that recycles concrete in a controlled environment. The right amount and mix of materials contribute to the concept of circular economy through resource conservation / recycling and reuse. The manufacturing facility is capable of producing concrete blocks for walls and for pavers of varying shapes, sizes and colour options at a full capacity of 170 cubic metres a day.



Tell us about your product portfolio in recycled concrete and its various applications.


The Recycled Concrete Material TUFF range of products such as blocks and pavers are weather resistant, high-strength, energy-efficient and help save both time and cost of construction.TUFF Recycled Blocks &pavers are available in different shapes, sizes and colours according to the requirements of the client. TUFF Blocks have wide applications in walling, paving and landscaping activities.


The RCM Plant is capable of manufacturing 36000 blocks per day. The various types of concrete blocks include:

  • TUFF Solid Recycled Blocks
  • TUFF Hollow Recycled blocks that are light weight
  • TUFF Insulated Recycled Blocks with thermal insulation properties
  • TUFF Flyash Recycled Blocks


And about 54000 pavers per day that include:

  • TUFF Zigzag
  • TUFF Trihex
  • TUFF Euphrates
  • TUFF Colorado
  • TUFF I Section pavers



What is the USPs of your recycled concrete materials? How is it better than conventional concrete?


TUFF recycled concrete blocks are superior in many ways. They are weather-proof owing to their low water-absorbing quality. They are quite versatile in their usage application and are three times stronger than conventional clay bricks. Unlike clay bricks, these have minimal wastage during transportation, usage and handling. Thus it helps save time and cost. TUFF recycled concrete pavers last longer than standard concrete or asphalt. Flexible in structure, they are suited to seismic hot zones because they adapt to distortion. Maintaining and repairing pavers is cost-effective and efficient; only the units that are damaged need to be replaced.


Hence, TUFF Recycled Concrete Materials are superior in quality and strength in many ways. The use of Recycled Concrete Materials would also help reduce the pressure on quarries to generate more stone aggregates and natural river sand. It would help reduce the increased demand and related strain for natural resources, thus reducing further degradation of the environment. This would also help reduce dumping of concrete construction waste into landfills


Builders, construction teams and design practitioners who are committed to reducing the negative impact of construction activities on the environment should divert construction and demolition (C&D) materials from it being disposed into the dumping grounds. Instead, they can buy recycled products, practice reduction and reuse at source by salvaging, recycling and reusing existing materials.




Provide us details regards to the Green and recyclable virtues of your products. Please also details us on the Green Certifications awarded for this product.


Godrej is committed towards building a greener India through its Good & Green initiative. Environmentally sustainable practices are integrated in our manufacturing processes and value chain across businesses. Our efforts to achieve our sustainability goals include a range of initiatives from energy efficiency and water conservation at our manufacturing sites, to promoting IGBC/LEED-certified green buildings. Not only do we recycle concrete debris, our TUFF Recycled Concrete Materials product range is itself 100 percent recyclable and GreenPro certified. We believe that such initiatives help promote the circular economy by easing the increasing demand for natural resources and also help our society by reducing the need for dumping of construction and demolition waste into landfills.




Speed is of essence in today’s construction projects. In what way will your product expedite construction cycles?


While the issue of Recycled Concrete Materials by itself may not directly improve the speed of construction projects, it would be pertinent to note that the issue of dumping C&D waste into landfills has been one of the key reasons why the court had to intervene and prevent BMC from providing approvals for building construction for several months in Mumbai City. This had therefore, delayed several projects across Mumbai City causing adverse time & cost impact for several stakeholders in the Real Estate and Construction Sector.


Today, even the stone aggregates market is highly volatile and facing a lot of shortage due to government bans because of undue pressure on quarries resulting in intermittent stoppages of work due to non-availability of aggregates. All such events directly/ indirectly eventually result inpressure on the timelines and cost of the project.


Hence, encouraging products like the Godrej TUFF Recycled Concrete Materials can help us developers in a more sustainable manner which would indirectly help in prevention of delays of several construction projects by way of such government/ court interventions. 




What is your cost/quality equation in a price sensitive market like India? Could you talk of your strategies to push your products in a competitive atmosphere?


Pricing of RCM products is based on multiple factors such as location of the site, quantity of order, recycled content percentage in the recycled material, cost of processing and operations, statutory approvals etc. Besides, there are higher operational costs involved in running a state of the art, fully automated unit that helps ensure the high quality consistently. We are hopeful that the increasing adoption of such product in the market would make it even more competitively priced going forward. Reputed organizations which would like to demonstrate their commitments to sustainable development should lead the way in adopting such green/sustainable products.



What is the emphasis you have placed on R&D, innovation, and sustainability?


Godrej Construction has always believed in preserving the environment and promoting sustainability. Establishing such a large Recycled Concrete Material Manufacturing Plant in Mumbai is a clear demonstration of the commitment of Godrej towards sustainable development. These principles of sustainability and preservation of the environment can be seen even in the layout and planning of the factory premises. For instance, automation and technology deployed in the factory ensures that there is optimum usage of materials, high quality and consistency. The R&D / Quality lab helps develop and improve upon products such as ultra-high performance concrete, pervious concrete, decorative concrete etc. which can all be customized according to the customer's requirement.




How has your product fared so far?


Our range of TUFF Recycled Concrete Material Products are getting wide acceptance from many leading environmentally conscious players in the industry. Many of the reputed Real Estate Developers and Contractors such as Lodha Developers, Shapoorji Pallonji, Runwal Group, HCC Metro Project, Reliance Healthcare, Saifee Burhani Upliftment Trust, Ajmera Trion Towers, Golani Brothers, Capacite Infra, Recons Group, UN Corporation, Cosmos Landmark etc. have already taken the lead by demonstrating their commitment to sustainable development in adopting these environment friendly products for their projects.




Please offer a brief overview of the developments in the concrete industry and the role being played by your company in this space?


As part of the development, the concrete industry is facing the challenge of meeting the growing needs for infrastructure development and housing. Also there are issues like limiting the impact of CO2 emissions by the use of alternative materials in construction.


Another challenge is generation of Construction and Demolition (C&D) Waste. Keeping these challenges in mind,Godrej Construction has started recycling of concrete by establishing the RCM manufacturing plant in Mumbai. 


We have also received the ‘GreenPro’ certificate from Indian Green Building Council (IGBC) for our TUFF Recycled Concrete Blocks & Pavers, making them very beneficial for use in Green building constructions (as these can help secure more points for a higher Green Building rating).




What new products do you plan to develop for the construction sector?


Godrej plans to expand its range of TUFF products portfolio to meet the growing requirement of the Real Estate and Construction Sector. We have also ventured into selling light weight AAC-blocks under the brand name TUFF AAC Blocks and we look forward to expanding this line geographically in select markets. Our focus would also be on educating customers towards benefits of using Green Pro Certified Recycled Concrete Materials which offer developers better benefits as compared to conventional concrete blocks in LEED rating systems.


We are also exploring the possibility of using Recycled Concrete materials for Acropods, Tetrapods, street furniture, Garden Furniture and other non-structural concrete elements which could avoid large scale use of virgin natural materials.




Future outlook on the industry.


According to some of the forecasts for the Construction Industry we are quite optimistic about the outlook for growth of this sector.


With the government ready to mobilize $1 trillion investment plan over the next five years, the outlook for the construction sectorindeed looks very positive.




Your future roadmap for the company.


Godrej Construction has been supplying reliable, eco-friendly and cutting-edge construction materials since 1999.


Our endeavor has always been to serve the needs of our customers and delight them with our quality products and services.  Going forward, we will continue our focus on developing products which meet the evolving needs of our customers and also strive to reduce the adverse impact on the environment by helping demonstrate and develop India’s Real Estate and Civil Infrastructure Services in a more sustainable manner.


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