The reason behind this life-changing initiative

In the 2005 dengue in Mumbai, it was found that plastic bags were a major reason why the water drains during the storms were clogged, leading to floods in several areas. The state environment officials then went on to ban all sorts of plastic that were not only clogging the drains but also were harming the ecology as they are non-biodegradable.

India suffers a loss of Rs.15000 cr and 3 lakh jobs.

Out of all the businesses, the food and beverage industry seems to be tremendously affected as more and more of their parcel and takeaway businesses are shutting down. The restaurants across the city faced a downfall of 10 to 15 percent in their business. The hoteliers have no clarity on the use of plastic containers which are mainly used for packaging goods. The Maharashtra cabinet had decided to impose a ban on certain plastic items such as plastic carry bags, plastic plates, cups, forks, spoons and thermocol. Based in Wadala, The Indian Hotel and Restaurants Association said that the hoteliers are using injection molded containers which are reusable and recyclable containers with snap-on lids. The price of such containers has shot up which not very restaurant can afford on a daily basis.

Ordering food? Think twice as you might have to pay a lot more than just food.  It is estimated that the food delivery is going to get costlier by upto 30 percent. Orders of takeaway and parcels have dropped drastically since the ban.  “It is difficult to say the exact percent of the slowdown in business but more than half of the takeaway orders have been affected, “ said Santosh Shetty, President of Mumbai Unit of Indian Hotels and Restaurants.

The officials speak

The hoteliers claim that the Indian Cuisine which consists of gravies which was packed in containers cannot be packed in paper bags. Santosh Shetty added that this may lead to excess promotion of fast food chains serving pizzas and burgers which are handy and can be packed in paper boxes.

The senior manager at Sardar said that they have stopped 90 percent of takeaways.  Liquid based items have taken a toll and are impossible to carry in paper.  Home delivery is now passé. According to restaurateurs, the current cost of packaging is between Rs.2 and Rs.10.

Cutting- edge Alternatives

Image Courtesy- Indian Express

Ganesh Shetty, the owner of a restaurant based in Pune is setting some high standards when it comes to delivering.  Food will be sent out in steel tiffins which the consumers have to return to the restaurant.  This innovative move must be adapted elsewhere as it is environment- friendly and convenient at the same time.

Another smart move was taken by Starbucks wherein they ask the consumer to bring their coffee tumbler which would fetch them some discount on their purchase.

Alternative for plastic straw are paper straws and biodegradable straws.

Alternative for plastic containers are aluminum tins.

 

Its just a matter of time when all of us get used to this healthy change in our lifestyles and start doing some good deeds.