Several schools are going green by even asking students to use eco-friendly lunch boxes, and water bottles.
This year, stainless steel lunch boxes in different varieties have made a come back in a big way.
Stores in the city have displayed a range of lunch boxes, and water bottles in various shapes and colours. The demand for these has increased as several schools now insist that the students do not use plastic, say store keepers.
“Many customers now ask for steel wares for their children as there is more awareness against plastic in schools. So, this year we have steel in our supplies,” says M.K. Ramesh at Sapna Book House.
Stainless steel has also made a sizeable appearance in the wholesale outlets in the city.
“Though we are dealing with plastic wares, we have now introduced steel boxes and bottles to meet the need,” says N. Aravind, staff at Kasthuri Plastics.
Even though the prices are 50% higher for these compared to plastic, many of their customers go for it this year, he says.
The stainless steel lunch boxes come with colourful and thick rubber covering to avoid leakage and denting, while steel water bottles are available in various sizes, shapes and even with prints of popular cartoon characters.
There is better awareness among both parents and students through social media against the use of plastics. “Ours is a plastic- free campus and we always ask our students not to use plastic both on and off campus,” says Yeshoda Raman, administrator of Sarvvam pre-school. Some schools are providing steel lunch boxes and bottles.
Vidya Rao, a mother of two and a high school teacher at CS Academy, has to a large extent done away with plastic in her kitchen.
“I now use more steel and glassware to store water and other food items in my kitchen, as it is healthier. I also use earthenware bottles that have a rubber padding to reduce the breakage to store water; these are easily available in any organic product store in the city,” she says.
A public relations officer of an international school here that provides food to students says the school uses stainless steel ware.
Those who pack hot food in plastic containers are inviting diseases, say many school representatives. So parents, students, and schools are moving towards use of stainless steel containers, they say.