FMCG and agro food companies selling packaged fruit juices and dairy products have shifted to paper straws despite higher costs as the ban on plastic straws comes into effect from Friday.
Most companies have now put integrated paper straws with their small tetra packs after the government declined their pleas to extend the ban on plastic straws for six months. “Dabur has already commenced production of Real juice packs with integrated paper straws. We are committed to meeting the regulations and will ensure that all packs come with integrated paper straws,” Dabur India Executive Director-Operations Shahrukh Khan said.
The government’s ban on single-use plastics, including plastic straw, is going to be effective from July 1, 2022. Earlier, raising their apprehensions, companies had said the country lacks the technology for manufacturing paper straws. However, the domestic paper industry has rejected these claims. Issuing a statement last week, the Indian Paper Manufacturers Association (IPMA) had said the domestic paper industry has enough capacity and technological know-how to manufacture paper for making paper straws and other similar products.
Terming it as “factually incorrect”, IPMA President A S Mehta had said a “wrong impression” is being created that presently there is no Indian paper mill that can manufacture the required paper for making paper straws and opposed any extension of the deadline on this pretext. Companies such as Parle Agro and Dabur have replaced plastic straws with imported paper straws, and are also working to develop domestic manufacturing capabilities.
Earlier, Mother Dairy Fruit & Vegetable Pvt Ltd had said it will be importing paper straws though these are four times more expensive than the existing plastic straws. Leading dairy cooperative Amul was working on manufacturing biodegradable straws.