Pune: Despite the State government's newly-imposed ban on use of plastic items, juice centres and coconut sellers across the city still provide plastic straws to customers. Surprisingly, many sellers are not even aware that plastic straws are included in the list of banned items.
Sakal Times visited Bohri Ali in Raviwar Peth to review the situation and found that many sellers are giving out plastic straws and bending straws to customers till their stocks last.
"Manufacturers have stopped providing straws, but we still have a lot of stock with us. So, we will provide straws till the Court gives an order on Maharashtra's plastic ban," said Kishore Admane, owner of a juice shop in Shivajinagar.
Another coconut seller at Shivajinagar, Nandu Shinde said, "In our business, plastic straws are needed because people are unable to drink coconut water without a straw. After the ban, we need to find out an alternative to straws."
Sachin Kondhalkar, owner of Sujata Mastani, said, "The research team is still in search of alternatives to plastic straws and plastic spoons that we give with our drinks. We are mulling a plan to change plastic straws and spoons with paper straws and wooded spoons. Many shops might stop providing straws and spoons because they have exhausted their stock, but the rest of the shops are still providing these items."
Sellers are not happy with the paper straw alternative as it is costlier. "A paper straw is sold at 60 Paise and a plastic straw is sold at 20 Paise. After the ban, there is no hike in demand of paper materials because the cost is 30 times higher," said a seller.
Additionally, there are many drawbacks of paper materials. "Paper straws cannot be bent like plastic straws and require more space. Moreover, paper materials tend to get a bad odour if stored for a long time, because there are several chemical adhesives used during the production," said Surrinder Singh Bagga, seller of paper materials near Mangalwar Peth.