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Cabinet approves extension of norms for mandatory packaging in Jute Materials

The Union Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs has approved extension of norms for mandatory packaging in jute materials. As per the decision, 100 percent of food grains and 20 percent of sugar will be mandatorily packed in diversified jute bags.

The decision mandates that initially 10 percent of the indents of jute bags for packing foodgrains would be placed through reverse auction on the Gem portal. The Government has expanded the scope of mandatory packaging norms under the Jute Packaging Material (JPM) Act, 1987. 

However, if there is any shortage or disruption in supply of jute packaging material, the Ministry of Textiles may relax these provisions up to a maximum of 30% of the production of foodgrains.

Significance

The effort is a part of several efforts being taken by the government for the development of jute sector, as livelihood of nearly 3.7 lakh workers and several lakh farm families are dependent on the jute sectors.

This would not only increase the quality and productivity of raw jute but also help in diversification of jute sector and boost demand for jute products.

Benefits

The move will largely benefit farmers and workers located in India's Eastern and North Eastern regions, especially in the states of West Bengal, Bihar, Odisha, Assam, Andhra Pradesh, Meghalaya and Tripura.

Under the Jute Packaging Materials (Compulsory use in Packing Commodities) Act, 1987, the Government is required to consider compulsory use of jute packaging material in the supply and distribution of certain commodities. 

This would further the interest of domestic production of raw jute and jute packaging material in India, enabling India to become self-reliant in consonance with Aatma Nirbhar Bharat.

Background

India's jute industry is largely dependent on the government sector, as it purchases jute bags of value of around Rs 7,500 crore every year for packing of foodgrains. This will not only help sustain the core demand for the jute sector but also support the livelihood of workers and farmers dependent on the sector.

Source: PIB

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