Malé, Maldives – As the Environment Ministry declared that after 1 June 2021, the import of 9 types of plastic would be restricted in Maldives, the import of supari packets will also be stopped.
When this was announced last year, so many people were dismayed. Many memes were created and circulated on social media platforms. The talks of importing supari in glass bottles were made jokingly. Now the jokes have become a reality with supari sold in bottles at retailers.
The supari bottles of 110 grams, cost MVR 80 per bottle.
Supari is an arecanut product popular among Maldivians, and consumed by all ages including children. However, the Cancer Society of Maldives advises against using all arecanut products since they are classified by the World Health Organization’s (WHO) International Association of Research on Cancer as a Group 1 carcinogen. In other words, there is convincing evidence that the product causes cancer.
The 9 types of plastic import which is to be cancelled on June:
- Plastic straws
- Single use plastic plates, cups, spoons, knives, forks
- Styrofoam boxes used to pack food
- Plastic bags used in shopping which are smaller than 30 centimeter in length
- “Supari” (arecanut products) imported in plastic packets
- Plastics cups and mugs which have smaller capacity than 250 millilitre
- Cotton buds with plastic sticks
- Shampoo and shower gel bottles below 50 millilitre
- PET bottles under 500 millilitres, containing drinks such as water and soft drinks
Ministry added that on 1 December 2022, further 2 types of plastic import will be cancelled. These are plastic bags which are thinner than 50 micron and shampoo bottles under 200 millilitres.
Due to the cancellation of these imports, the waste in Maldives will be reduced, along with a huge reduction to the environmental damages caused by single use plastics.