Shimla: Defying conventional packing of eatable snacks in plastic packaging, a Baddi, Himachal Pradesh based unit has come up with eco-friendly, completely bio-degradable paper pack for potato chips and other munching snacks.
With the Himachal Pradesh government having enacted a law to ban plastic packaging for all kinds of snacks that the courts are insistent on enforcing in the state, the Gopal Group (rechristened as GCL), after sensing an opportunity in it, today launched the paper packed snack packets here at a simple ceremony.
Speaking on the occasion Apoorv Gupta, Managing Director, GCL said, “we are committed to act responsibly and device innovative business solutions to reduce environmental impacts and deliver products and services that help to build a sustainable future.”
Only yesterday, a Supreme Court bench consisting of Justices RM Lodha and Justice SK Singh granted a temporary reprieve to Himachal Pradesh Vyapar Mandal, Haroli Block Industrial Association, Sanyukt Vyapar Mandal and Retailers Association of India till February 14 about extending a deadline about implementing a ban on sale of 25 food articles packed in polythene sheets in Himachal Pradesh, which the HP High Court had decreed on December 26, 2013.
Where other big players in packed food articles are unwilling to innovate and introduce bio-degradable packaging into the hill state, for the small market is said to only constitute 5 % of the national share, new entrant GCL is seeing an opportunity in a market where other would be debarred under the new law.
“In a year we target to corner about 2 percent of the market in Himachal Pradesh,” said Gupta, “and hope to achieve a sale turnover of Rs 1 crore.”
Though the food articles packaged in the innovative bio-degradable paper packaging has been priced at Rs 5/-, Rs 10/- and Rs 15/- but quantity provided per pack is 50 % less than that in a plastic pack.
In other words, the articles in the new packaging would cost for 50 percent more than the conventional plastic packaging.
“Caring for the environment is everybody’s responsibility and it does have a cost to it,” said Gupta about the higher pricing.
The group, which already has a presence in UP, Haryana, Delhi, West Bengal, Orrisa today announced launching of its products in Shimla, Kulu, Una, Solan, Nahan, Kangra, Sirmor and Mandi.
Where in other states the produce is sold in plastic packs, abiding by the tough anti plastic laws of Himachal Pradesh the group has introduced the new bio-degradable packing.
“The pack is made out of corn starch and paper and has been field tested before being launched. The packaging has been approved by government of India for packaging edible food items in consonance with industry standards and the packed food articles have a shelf life of 3 to 4 months in the new bio-degradable packs,” said Gupta.