WITHIN the next three years, the state government hopes that traders at Ramadan bazaars will no longer use plastic bags to pack food for customers.
Selangor Tourism, Consumer Affairs and Environment committee chairman Elizabeth Wong said, however, that the state was unable to force traders not to use plastic bags as it was cheaper and customers preferred it.
“But, the state has introduced containers that can be reused. We also encourage traders not to use polystrene when packing food.
“We found that plastic bags are only used once and thrown away. And a number of these plastic bags are found in the drains and rivers, affecting the environment.
“The traders must learn good habits and customers also should encourage it by bringing their own containers and bags when they visit these bazaars in an effort to protect the environment,” said Wong.
Wong was speaking at the launch of the Ramadan bazaar in Jalan Seroja 1, Bukit Sentosa, in Hulu Selangor, which is the biggest in the district.
Hulu Selangor District Council president Mohd Zain A. Hamid said for the last three years, the council had been encouraging traders not to use polystrene and plastic bags.
“We have also organised competitions for those who are able to keep their stalls clean and hygienic throughout the fasting month. The winner will get an incentive of being given a priority spot at next year’s Ramadan bazaar.
“As in previous years, we are collecting 20sen from each stall for each plastic bag used and the collection received will be given to one of the orphanages in Hulu Selangor,” he said.
Both Wong and Mohd Zain then presented food containers to the stall operators during their visit to these stalls here.