19 July 2021

Biodegradable lunch sheets compulsory from August 01.

The Environment Ministry has made the use of biodegradable lunch sheets compulsory from August 1, Environment Minister Mahinda Amaraweera said.

Addressing the media, he said biodegradable lunch sheets should be made available in shops from the said date.

Non-perishable lunch sheets made of polythene will be banned from August 1 and also their production and distribution.

However, a grace period of one month will be granted to sell the existing stock of lunch sheets which have already been produced. Any new production and distribution of lunch sheets made of polythene will be prohibited thereafter, the Minister said.

The Central Environmental Authority (CEA) and the Consumer Affairs Authority (CAA) will conduct raids to find whether the prohibited materials are still being produced. Law will be strictly enforced against the persons who manufacture and distribute in defiance of government order.

He also said a Cabinet Memorandum will be signed today (14) to submit to the Cabinet a list of banned items on eight other types of polythene and plastic products for immediate disposal.

Accordingly, the list of banned products is as follows: Single use straws and stirrers,  spoons, forks, yoghurt spoons and knives made of single plastic, volumes lesser than 400x500mm shopping bags, plastic string hopper trays, Polythene packed incense sticks and wicks, plastic garlands, plastic cups and Lunch sheets.

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