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Banana Leaves: Can they replace plastic packaging?

Banana Leaves: Can they replace plastic packaging?

Vietnam and Thailand are leading the search for the answer to the single use plastic packaging problem with some innovation using banana leaves.  

We all know the issues plastic is causing across the planet, and whilst we are still producing 500 millions tons of it every year, there doesn't seem to be many answers to how to stop it. Every year 50% of all plastic produced is classed as 'single use', meaning a big chunk of our problem could be solved by just changing the way we package products.
When you actually think about it, plastic is a poisonous material, and yet we continue to throw it in our oceans, which then gets consumed by fish, which then gets consumed by us!  
According to VN Express, Vietnam are the fourth largest polluting nations in the world in terms of ocean plastic, so it is a good sign that these less economically developed countries are making the effort. Which poses the question, 'what are the developed countries doing?'. Okay give it we are now charging for plastic bags, but surely there is more we can do than that? China have banned plastic bag use back in 2008, so why have other countries not followed? 
It seems like the answer is for governments to pass laws to make single use plastic's illegal, but realistically speaking a lot of businesses don't have an alternative to swap to yet. Hopefully as time goes on and the issue gets to new levels, more businesses and countries will invest resources into solving the problem. 
All we can do for now is continue to reduce, reuse and recycle as much as we can, because the bottom line is, every piece of plastic we don't use, is another piece that doesn't enter this world. 

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