Surcharge for bottled water and milk packets

Consumers purchasing bottled water and milk polypacks will have to pay an extra charge as a deposit to the retailer, which will be refunded when the empty bottles and poly packs are returned to them.

The move comes after the state cabinet decided, on Thursday, to ban plastic bags and plastic and thermocol cutlery.

“The re-purchase must not be less than 50 paise per bag,” said environment minister Ramdas Kadam. It will be made mandatory for milk dairies, distributors and retailers to repurchase poly packs for recycling. Food-grade plastic bags above 50 microns must be used for packaging milk.

“We will assess this system for three months,” added Kadam. “If it is not implemented, milk bags will be banned. Biodegradable plastic bags can also be used for milk.”

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