Supermarkets in Vietnam are using banana leaves instead of plastic bags. This initiative was adopted from Thailand. Rimping Supermarket in Chiang Mai posted a photo on their Facebook page promoting the new eco-friendly packaging. This incredible idea caught the attention of Vietnamese supermarkets.
Big supermarkets like Big C, Lotte Mart, and Saigon Co.op have started to follow the Thai store’s example. Now, they use banana leaves as a packaging alternative. Lotte Mart chain announced in an interview with VnExpress that they are still in the testing phase, and their goal is to replace plastic with leaves around the country very soon. They plan to use the leaves for fresh meat products as well.
Since then, the customers have been applauding the effort.
“This initiative is a great way to help locals to take care of the environment. When I see the products wrapped in banana leaves, I am willing to buy more and more”, said a local customer called Hoa.
This kind of packaging is a helpful addition to some other efforts establishments in Vietnam that are working on reducing plastic waste.
For instance, Big C already uses biodegradable bags made of corn. Such efforts are of the utmost importance if we consider the fact that Vietnam is number four in the world for plastic waste dumped into the ocean. About 2,500 tons of plastic waste is disposed of by the Vietnamese people every day showed a recent report.
Reducing single-use plastic bags is a trend that grows across supermarkets in Asia.
South Korea conducted a policy that requires commercial establishments and supermarkets to provide recyclable containers to buyers.
Supermarkets in Singapore are launching campaigns by which they send a message to reduce plastic bag use. And the Taiwanese shops started charging for single-use bags to prevent customers from using them.
In 2008 China forbade the use of ultra-thin plastic bags, and since then, plastic bag use has dropped to 66 percent.