Fresh produce must be transported in plastic crates in Sri Lanka from tomorrow

Aug 31, Colombo: Sri Lankan farmers and traders are required to use plastic crates for transporting their produce to the market from tomorrow (September 01) the Cooperatives and Internal Trade Ministry announced today.

Minister of Trade Johnston Fernando says aim of this move is to minimize wastage of fruits and vegetables in improper transportation.

As a first step, the Ministry plans to educate the farmers, traders and collectors on the use of plastic containers for transportation.

Accordingly, the transporters of vegetables and fruits have been instructed via a handbook to use only plastic craters and cardboard boxes in transporting vegetable and fruit. The crates will be provided at a concessionary to the farmers.

The move aims to prevent the over 40 percent post-harvest wastage in the agriculture sector.

The Ministry says a large percentage of vegetables get wasted due to improper use of packaging in delivery and the country can save Rs. 20 billion per year if the plastic crates are used to transport produce.

The Ministry of Cooperatives and Internal Trade brought this law at the beginning of the year but postponed implementation giving ample time to the stakeholders to adjust to the change.

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