Connect with us


Production of degradable replacement is expensive stumbling block in plastic bag ban

Maya Taylor



As a widespread ban on single-use plastic bags looms, the high cost of producing a viable, environmentally-friendly alternative is proving a challenge. Forty three shopping malls and convenience stores across the country will stop providing single-use bags from January 1, as part of the Government’s commitment to phase the bags out entirely. There’s still a lot more plastic to get rid of but the single use plastic bag ban across such a large group of retailers will make a big impact.

However, Thai PBS World reports that the cost of making degradable non-plastic bags is currently two to three times higher than producing conventional single-use plastic bags. It’s understood the Ministry of Higher Education, Science, Research and Innovations is working with the private sector to come up with a viable alternative that adheres to the concept of zero-waste.

The National Science and Technology Development Agency have produced a degradable bag made from tapioca flour, which contains no plastic but is strong and elastic. Crucially, it dissolves in water or in the ground within three or four months.

The managing director of the first company to make a bag from tapioca flour, Khem Wanglee, says the cost of production is very high and this is a hurdle that’s currently preventing full-scale production. He suggests producers and private businesses who use the bags be given tax breaks as an incentive.

For their part, the producers of traditional single-use plastic bags have expressed support for the alternatives but are also concerned about costs and the impact on their business. They say they need more time to work out how to deal with stockpiles of plastic once the ban is in place and decide what they will do with redundant machinery.

The Thai Plastic Industry Association is calling on the Government to help by purchasing leftover stock and providing compensation for employees who will lose their jobs if factories shut down.

SOURCE: Thai PBS World


Get more from The Thaiger

📱 Download our app on Android or iOS
👋 Have your say on our Thailand forums
🔔 Subscribe to our daily email newsletter
📺 Subscribe / Join YouTube for daily shows
👍 Like/Follow us on Facebook
🐦 FOLLOW us on Twitter
📷 FOLLOW us on Instagram


Join the conversation and have your say on Thailand news published on The Thaiger.

Thaiger Talk is our new Thaiger Community where you can join the discussion on everything happening in Thailand right now.

Please note that articles are not posted to the forum instantly and can take up to 20 min before being visible. Click for more information and the Thaiger Talk Guidelines.

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

A seasoned writer, with a degree in Creative Writing. Over ten years' experience in producing blog and magazine articles, news reports and website content.

Follow Thaiger by email:

Coronavirus (Covid-19)22 mins ago

Nonthaburi field hospital adds an ICU

Coronavirus Vaccines24 mins ago

Older volunteers wanted for trials of Chulalongkorn University mRNA vaccine

Crime38 mins ago

Officers surprise drug suspect with birthday cake in Nakhon Si Thammarat

Sponsored23 hours ago

Tour Phuket’s Islands with 5 Star Marine

Welcome back to Thailand!

Thaiger is getting behind local businesses for the restart of tourism in Thailand - up to 50% discounts across all advertising packages!

Coronavirus Vaccines48 mins ago

WHO calls for booster shots to be suspended while poor countries face vaccine shortages

Myanmar1 hour ago

Rumours of meeting with Aung San Suu Kyi as Burmese military accept ASEAN envoy

Best of2 hours ago

Top 10 Hemp-Friendly Restaurants In Thailand

Join the conversation on the Thaiger Talk forums today!
Coronavirus (Covid-19)2 hours ago

Waste disposal firm calls for rubbish collectors to be vaccinated

Coronavirus (Covid-19)2 hours ago

Thursday Covid Update: High of 20,920 new cases and 160 deaths

Coronavirus (Covid-19)2 hours ago

Rollout of Pfizer doses gets underway

Coronavirus (Covid-19)9 hours ago

20 year old arrested for online alternative vaccine scam

Coronavirus (Covid-19)13 hours ago

Delta variant now the predominant strain, 78% of Thai infections

Coronavirus (Covid-19)15 hours ago

Controversial food delivery only rule faces criticism

Drugs17 hours ago

Expat arrested on drug charges allegedly claims to be a local “Robin Hood”

Thailand17 hours ago

Thai Airways selling 10 properties to raise capital

Best of18 hours ago

The 5 Best Cafes in Koh Samui

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Thai Airways in rehab, All go for Songkran | March 4

Tourism5 months ago

Phuket’s nightlife. Yes, bars and clubs are still open | VIDEO

Phuket5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid passport talks, Thai Airways heads to court | March 2

Tourism5 months ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bars, pubs and restaurants ‘sort of’ back to normal | Feb 23

Tourism5 months ago

In search of Cat & Dog Cafés in Phuket Town | VIDEO

Thailand7 months ago

Thailand News Today | Gambling crackdown, Seafood market to reopen, Vlogger challenge | Jan 21

Thailand7 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19

Thailand7 months ago

Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18

Thailand7 months ago

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15

Thailand7 months ago

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14

Thailand7 months ago

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13

Thailand7 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12

Thailand7 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11

Thailand7 months ago

Thailand News Today | Southern floods, Face mask fines, Thai Air Asia woes | January 8