Staff Correspondent
The days of polythene bags are going to be over soon as the government is planning to go into production of an environment-friendly alternative to them within next six to none months.
The new kind of bag produced from jute has been named ‘Sonali Bag’ that works, looks and feels like a polythene bag but has no negative environmental impact.
The government will produce Sonali Bags with technical support from United Kingdom-based company Futamura Chamical Ltd.
State minister for Textiles and Jute Mirza Azam made public the government plan at a signing ceremony between Bangladesh Jute Mills Corporation (BJMC) and Futamura Chemical Ltd for commercial production of ‘Sonali Bag’ at the secretariat in the capital on Tuesday. BJMC secretary AKM Tareq (deputy secretary) and Graeme Coulthard, general manager of Futamura Chemical Ltd, signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) and a Non-disclosure Agreement (NDA) on behalf of the respective sides.
The minister said the government has also taken initiatives to increase productions of raw jute and diversified jute goods, increase export of jute goods, and to raise internal use of jute and jute products and restricted use of plastic bags to protect environment.
To uphold jute and jute-made products to the world market a permanent display and sales center has been established at the Jute Diversification Promotion Centre, as per the prime minister’s direction. As many as 235 jute goods are available at the sales centre, Mirza Azam adds.
Besides, there are plan to manufacture and market products like charcoal, viscose, jute drinks and many more to increase jutes- he informed.
Sonali Bag is a biodegradable and environment-friendly jute-made ploy bag. Bangladeshi scientist Dr Mubarak Ahmad Khan, a scientific advisor of BJMC and former chief scientific officer of Bangladesh Atomic Energy Commission, invented the Sonali Bag from jute cellulose.
Primary Pilot Plant (PPP) for producing Sonali Bag was set up at Latif Bawani Jute Mills in Demra.
It is to be noted, Bangladeshi scientists invention ‘Sonali Bag’ bag looks like polyethene bag but actually not. Strength is also about to same of polyethene bag, 100 percent eco-friendly, sustainable, recyclable and will be mingled with soil within only 3-4 months where polyethene took even 2oo years. This eco-friendly jute bag is made from jute cellulose. As results, environment will not be polluted. If use of this bag can be increased then country’s jute will regain its old glory.
At present, under BJMC through a manual plant this bag is being producing. But there is no such technology to go for large production. Different countries have been asked if they can provide such technology. But primarily a machine has been invented using local technology which can produce 3000-4000 bags each day.
Senior secretary of the ministry Faizur Rahman Chowdhury, BJMC Chairman Dr Md Mahmudul Hasan and the inventor Dr Mubarak Ahmad Khan, among others, were present at the signing ceremony.