Retail chains attempt to curb Plastic ill affects

It is understandable that consumers are switching over to supermarket chains for household shopping. These outlets offer competitively priced groceries and other essential under one roof. An unfortunately offshoot of this phenomenon, though is the alarmingly high use of plastic in both product wrappings and carry bags. Consumer organizations and environmentalists have raised concerns about this trend. Some hill states have banned the use of plastic bags. Basically retailers do not pay attention to eco-friendly aspects. Consumer education is also missing.

In a positive development retail chains expressed willingness when leading newspapers spoke to big retailers to reduce their usage. Subhiksha, for instance, has already introduced a 0.5% discount on bill if a consumer brings in his own carrying. It is to promote green habits. KB’s Fair shops encourage consumers to carry their own bags. CEO of Hyper City Retail (India), is reticent about disclosing the company’s green initiatives, but speaks of “an advanced plan” which will be revealed in three months.

While the use thin plastic bags is banned under the Recycled plastics manufacture and Usage Rules, 1999 (amended 2003), and various rules. Thick bags carry their own set of problems. Thick plastic bags are the most difficult to degrade to ensure in their usage. There is a concept called extended producer responsibility. Make a producer responsible for disposing of bags. It should not be the responsibility of municipalities alone. The ministry of environment and forests too is exploring this concept. When manufacturers like to have an extensive distribution system, they must also establish a collection back system too. Earlier people (consumers) lived all their lives without plastic bags and therefore they can live now too. Once you impose a ban, alternatives come in. Retailers must set up state-of-the-art recycling centers.

A Mumbai resident who lived in the US for many years says every grocery store there offers the option of paper or plastic carry bags. Besides large bins are kept outside the stores to collect used plastic bags. Program Director, Centre programs for Environmental Education (CEE) advises: malls are the best paces to easily promote paper, jute even non-woven cloth bags and other materials which are biodegradable. Individual states on their part have their own anti-plastic initiatives in place, albeit for the thin variety. Enforcement authorities in Mumbai, for instance, banned bags less than 50 microns in thickness. They completed a driver in January where the enforcement authorities seized 2,400 kilos of plastics bags below 50 microns and recovered a fine of Rs 11 lakh from 18 spots.

Enforcement of the Maharashtra Plastic carry bags (Manufacture and Usage) Rules 2006 also comes under the purview of the State Pollution Control Boards, the industries departmental and the district collector. In Mumbai, however, the enforcement is being done by the municipality alone.

Recycle Friendly:

* Carry cloth bags or encourage shopkeepers to stock paper or jute bags.
* Avoid single-use disposable plastics such as bags, bubble packaging plastic, cups, plates spoons and straws.
* If you must buy goods in plastic containers, reuse them wherever possible. But don’t reuse for pouring in hot milk, tea, kerosene or pesticides. These plastics will ultimately get processed as containers for food and water and the toxins will come back to you.
* Give plastic containers to the local scrap dealer but make sure containers of toxic products like detergents are sent to landfills through garbage.

This article we have considered under Marketing management as packing is the prerogative of Marketing department. Without the involvement of the Marketing group the curbing of plastic ill affects in not possible.