Benefits and Usage of Leaf Plates – Tapari
We see utensils and dishes made with plastics and thermocol in lots of places and occasions like parties, marriages and other event. They are easy to handle and cheaper. However, it is very necessary to learn that our convenience is causing serious threats to the environment. But you might have noticed, when you go out to eat on streets these days, you also see lots of leaf plates in use. They have started replacing paper and plastic plates. They do not look only fancy but has great environmental values as well. Over, traditional and religious activities like pooja and rituals, leaf plates also known as “Tapari” have started being used widely in Nepalese markets and households. They are also used worldwide
With the increasing population globally, our environment is under serious threat. We are facing alarming issue of global warming resulting in severe climatic threats. Every year, our media airs lots of news about floods, landslides and other climatic disasters. Along with modernization, our consumption behavior has rapidly been seeking for luxury goods. This has resulted in massive deforestation. Resources are depleting at an alarming rate. However, people have also started realizing the fact that over-consumption of the natural resources and not realizing the threats over nature by the products we use have in-turned been threat for our upcoming generations. As one of the solutions, leaf plates have undoubtedly been an innovation that has huge environmental value.
Leaf plates “Tapari” are of huge significance as they are replacing plastic and paper plates. This has helped in developing clean environment. You must know that plastic pollution is a serious problem as only 9% of the whole plastics are reusable. They are recycled or remodeled to bring back in use in the form of different products. But the remaining 91% are decomposed in the large water resources. This ends up taking life of seabirds and mammals. Similarly, paper products could appear to be a solution however, we will have to realize that it demands for large quantity of wood. This results in deforestation again.
Leaf plates have undoubtedly been a remarkable solution to save the environment, by reducing the use of plastic and paper plates for least. Moreover, they are cheaper as well. Being eco-friendly, they have contributed to cut down waste and keep the environment clean. It is also important to know that leaves are biodegradable and decomposable. Therefore, they are environmental friendly and assure for pollution control. If we go back to ages, we can realize how far sighted our ancestors were. It is for sure that, lack of technology also was one of the reason why paper and plastic plates didn’t exist. But they were more into using things pre-existing in the nature. This simply meant, what came from nature would be finally consumed by nature without any complexity. But our science and technology invented so many things that cannot be consumed by nature resulting in the pollution.
Here are some importance of using Leaf plates “Tapari”
Based on the prevailing vegetation and climate, leaf plates are made of different plants and their parts like bamboo, palm leaves, grasses and waste obtained obtained from sugarcane. In Nepal, we often see leaf plates (locally known as Tapari) made of Sal Tree Leaves. Therefore, the leaf plates do not demand for cutting down trees. It completely avoids deforestation over the plastic or paper products that affect the environment. Plastic products affect environment from the early manufacturing process until the final point of use and post-use decomposition. Moreover, plastic products have also been found hazardous to health.
Leaf plates are beautiful, stylish and attractive. They are cheaper too. Moreover, they also complement home and other decors, unlike paper and plastic disposables. Tapari are convenient to use and easy to dispose. As aforementioned, they are biodegradable and healthy for environment. They are consumable by micro-organisms and natural compounds upon disposed.
Without any argument, Leaf Plates “Tapari” are natural gift to us being 100% natural and Eco-friendly. They do not have any threats over our health and hazardous effect over the environment. They can be burnt or disposed easily. Moreover, Tapari made from Sal Leaves are consumable directly by our household animals like cows and buffaloes so we do not need to worry about disposing them.
Leaf plates are certainly in trend worldwide having significant environmental value. If we look at the Nepalese market too, it has gone beyond conventional Tapari. Tapari were originally meant for religious rituals where they are holders for different pooja products. They are made of different sizes. Leaf plates manufacturing have emerged as an industry these days. And it has also contributed our community by providing lots of employment and also been supporting environment conservation. Bamboo plates, areca leaf plates are trending. You can even notice these leaf plates being used in lots of expensive eateries. It is not only limited to street momos using Tapari, giving them synonym as Tapari Momo. In Nepal, leaf plates manufacturing is still a start-up. Meanwhile, it is a booming and huge industry beyond our border.
Some European nations are even importing huge amount of areca palm leaves from India as those nations do not have these trees. Use of Leaf plates have replaced tons of paper and plastic products. Moreover, the whole import process has also shortened by distance and time saving lots of money. Similarly, leaf plates have low carbon footprints. If you want to know what carbon footprint is: it is the total amount of green house gases emitted directly or indirectly by human, organization, event or product. It is measured in the tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent (tCO2e). You might be shocked to learn that burning just 1 kg of oil produced about 3 kg CO2. Similarly, every kg of plastic produces 6 kg carbon dioxide only during production and incineration. Therefore, you must have realized how hazardous plastic use is for our lives.
It is very important to know how our actions and consumption behavior are affecting the environment and ourselves. This is the time when we start being serious over environmental issues. Ozone depletion and global warming have been serious issues. Use of plastics has been identified as one of the major causes for global warming due to heave CO2 emission. We have got leaf plates as significant solution over paper and plastic plates and utensils. Therefore, it is very necessary that we start using leaf plates “tapari” that has great environmental value.