Ananda Kannangara – dailynews.lk
Environment Minister Mahinda Amaraweera welcomed the decision taken by owners of a large number of hotels, restaurants and way side eating houses in using environment friendly lunch wraps made from banana and lotus leaves when serving meals to customers.
He said even medical specialists are of the view that people, especially children will not have to face health hazards in future when using such environment friendly banana and lotus leaves when consuming food.
According to a recent research conducted by the Central Environmental Authority (CEA), it showed that biodegradable polythene was also made using certain chemical solutions.
If someone thinks that it is hard to wrap lunch or dinner packets with banana or lotus leaves due to its tiny size then such banana or lotus leaves could be used along with any other hard environmental friendly items when wrapping meal packets.
Minister Amaraweera said during his several official visits he personally noticed that certain large scale hoteliers in rural as well as in urban areas are in the habit of serving meals and other food items in banana and lotus leaves.
“Some eating houses in the Colombo city and suburban areas are now in the habit of serving meals to foreign nationals using banana and lotus leaves and the plates and spoons are also made of arecanut leaves,” he said.
He said that even many star class hotels in India have now turned to environmentally friendly raw materials rather than using polythene paper or plastic to consume food items.
The Minister also appealed parents to use environmentally friendly banana or lotus leaves when wrapping hot meals for their children. The CEA research also indicates that the country’s environment is gradually deteriorating due to dumping of used plastic packaging and burning them in the open environment.
It is said due to this situation, both the country’s soil and the water bodies are facing a severe damage and it affects the living- beings as well as fauna and flora.