Manufacturers say they started getting a lot of calls after the ban on plastic bags became official
The ban on plastic in the
State has turned out to be a boon for manufacturers of paper bags. They have
reported a spurt in interest with retailers, hotels and restaurants dominating
the enquiries. Paper bags are being seen as the obvious replacement for plastic
Kala Charlu, founder of Multiple Initiatives Towards
Upliftment (MITU), said they had been receiving a ‘lot of enquiries’ of late,
mostly through references. “The demand is from shops and hotels. In fact, a big
retail shop has asked for 4,000 bags at one go. We are seeing demand from areas
such as Koramangala, Whitefield and Bellandur. They are even ready to come and
collect the bags when we informed that we may have to charge for delivery,” she
Made with old newspapers by people in Nelamangala, Chikkabanavara
and other places, these bags are priced between 70 paise and Rs. 6 per piece.
“We use two layers of newspapers. But if the customer insists, we add an
additional brown paper in the end to give it a uniform look and allow them to
print whatever they want to,” Ms. Charlu added.
Things are looking up for mass manufacturers too. Bharath V.
R., owner of Bag Factor, an automated bag manufacturer, said apparel and shoe
companies had begun calling ever since the ban was made official. “We have the
capacity to prepare 20 lakh bags a month. But we are running far under capacity
as of now, making just around five lakh. Only big retailers are willing to
purchase the bags, which cost between Rs. 7.50 and Rs. 12 per piece, depending
on paper quality,” he said. Kondaiah Chowdary’s Creative Print Pack, a
Hyderabad-based company, caters mainly to Bengaluru. He is getting a lot of
calls from hotels and restaurants for paper bags for takeaways. Their main
clientele otherwise comprises retailers of mobile phones, optical equipment and
However, scrap dealers are yet to witness an increase in
demand for old newspapers. "The ban order is all too new," said Vijay
Kumar, a dealer in V.V. Puram. At present, they buy old newspapers for anywhere
between Rs. 9 and Rs. 11 per kg. Old cardboard boxes and material are bought
for Rs. 7.