PACE salutes grassroots recyclers with its ‘Salam Hai’ campaign
The campaign, released on the occasion of Gandhi Jayanti, promotes waste segregation and recycling
To honour Gandhi Jayanti, PACE (PET Packaging Association for Clean Environment) has launched a special initiative to recognise the contribution of grassroots recyclers – the ragpickers – who make the first and biggest contribution to the recycling of PET bottles. Kicking off a communication campaign ‘Salam Hai’ (‘Salute’) to highlight the contribution of ragpickers in the recycling process of PET bottles, a special video campaign has been released on social media.
PET (Polyethylene Terephthalate) is one of the most widely used plastics for packaging applications and is 100% recyclable. Discarded PET bottles are collected, sorted, cleaned, shredded and made into washed flakes, which are then used to produce products like polyester fibre. This fibre can be used for a variety of applications like filling materials for cushions or pillows, or it can be converted into fabrics for use in clothing, upholstery, etc. In India, over 70% of PET waste is recycled and provides livelihoods to millions employed in the entire value chain of recycling process.
‘Salam Hai’ is themed on the life of ragpickers and their contribution to the recycling industry. The video features the ‘silent heroes’ of India who are doing their part without expecting anything in return. Today, ragpickers collect around 5,00,000 tons per year of post-consumer PET Bottles for producing polyester fibre alone, earning around Rs 1,000 crore per year for themselves. And as PET bottles are the most widely recycled plastic bottles, thus allows the ragpickers to sustain in their livelihood.P.C Joshi, Secretary General, PACE says, “At PACE, we believe that a culture of waste segregation and recycling are fundamental steps towards cleaner and environment-friendly cities while providing livelihood opportunities to people working in the recycling value chain. Ragpickers are the silent heroes who stand at the beginning of the recycling value and are inarguably the biggest contributors to PET recycling in India. PET is 100% recyclable and already the most recycled packaging material across the globe.”
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