The government of Pakistan should learn from Bangladesh, where the Appellate Division of Supreme Court has ordered the mandatory use of jute sacks for packaging rice, to provide the needed support to the country’s jute sacks industry against plastic or polythene packaging. The country is even providing a 7% cash subsidy on the export of jute products. Ironically, Pakistan government itself is engaged in procuring polypropylene bags for food grain storage, despite the fact jute is considered the best option for storage of wheat and other grains globally; as its natural fibres do not affect the quality of grain and protects them from sunlight and heat.

Jute bags also offer multiple reuse capability which can prove beneficial as Pakistan acutely lacks proper bulk handling facilities. Moreover, recycling jute doesn’t emit cancerous oxide. It is due to this fact that recycling of Polypropylene bags is prohibited in European countries. Promulgating a similar mandatory order will mitigate the risk of contamination and environmental damages besides earning green credit for the country. Furthermore, such a decision will also generate more employment opportunities in the jute industry which is at present supporting more than 125,000 people directly and indirectly.

FAREED.A.SIDDIQI,

Karachi, August 12.