Implementation of the plastic waste management (Amendment) rule, 2021 has increased the sale of biodegradable bags.
The Government of India issued the Plastic Waste Management (Amendment) Rule in 2021,prohibiting the use of single use plastic items by 2022. In the first phase, the government has banned the use of single use plastic carry bags less than 75 microns and non-woven bags less than 60 gram per square meter.
“Instead of plastic bags people are moving to cotton bags and jute bags. Compared to last financial year this financial year we are seeing a very good sale. Around 30 percent has increased,” said Rahul Kothari, founder of ECOFY. The sales of other manufacturers and sellers like Bag Bazar, Prayas Paintings and Handicrafts, and N-connection have also increased by 20-30 percent.
However, the increase in sales of biodegradable bags has not decreased the amount of plastic waste generated. According to Basvaraj Kabade, Chief Engineer, Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP), “The plastic waste has increased after covid lockdown. Before it was less but now it had increased.” Central Pollution Control Board, Delhi 2019-20 report, showed that BBMP conducted 8357 raids and seized 2205 tons of plastic.
“Most of the markets, big ones they don’t use plastic bags. In fact, it has brought the culture of rented bags,” said Sandeep Anirudhan, an environmentalist. It has also expanded the business for distributors across Bangalore.
Biodegradable bags manufacturers and sellers are expecting a further increase in their sales during the coming festive season.