While doing my grocery last weekend at Imtiaz Super Market in Karachi I was pleasantly surprised to see paper bags next to the cashier’s stall. As surprising as it was, it made my mind wander to all the shops I’d been and/or shopped from in the last year and so. There weren’t many but I could recount the following five on my fingertips that sold eco-friendly merchandise.
Here are five places to get started to your eco-friendly journey:
Imtiaz Super Market
Possibly the largest retail market with more than 15 functioning stores, Imtiaz is definitely playing its part for environmental conservatism. Although at the moment, paper bags have only been introduced to 3 of their stores, the step itself is innovative.
Their online blog states: If we stop using plastic, industries will stop producing them. Our environment is something that we’ve borrowed from our future generations, and we need to realize this and take ownership of it.
CCK – Citizen’s for a Clean Karachi
Although the Imtiaz supermarket initiative was publicized by CCK, CCK itself has a much larger aim for the city of Karachi. The initiate describes itself as:
CCK is an initiative focusing on the reduction of plastic bags which in the long run may well turn out to be an impetus for the formulation of a sustainable recycling system in Karachi.
They have for a year now actively participated in handing out cloth bags at various festivals and socials settings. Furthermore, they let you customize your own designs on cloth bags!
Check out their Facebook page for more details or email them at [email protected].
Dastoor by NOWPDP
A social and an environmental cause together? Trust NOWPDP to make it happen! With the mission to contribute towards the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, NOWPDP empowers people with disabilities by helping out with their micro-projects to be financially stable. The website states:
The whole process from designing to screen printing to stitching is done by persons with disabilities. We are thrilled at the support pouring in from places where the tote bags have been placed and then sold out. All of us can do a small act of reducing one-use plastic bags this way while also sporting a trendy tote bag.
Available at Springs and T2F.
The GreenBag Project
If you’re still confused as to where to get your perfect stylish yet environment-friendly tote, don’t worry because the Green Bag project has got you covered.
Founded by an 8-year-old, his mom and grandma, we created eco-friendly reusable grocery & produce bags made from 100% cotton. The initiative has different totes for different purposes from food to clothing items, so one can go green altogether!
Code Green currently works as a mediator and sells products not only from the Green Bag Project but also by individual artists.
Last year during the same time Sapphire launched eco-friendly bags that were made out of actual seeds. Not only this, they were selling seeds with each of their purchases for a green Pakistan. The bags took social media by storm and still continue to remind us that fashion does not need to be harmful to the environment.
And yet again, with 14th august soon approaching Sapphire has outdone itself again. Made from re-purposed fabric leftover from their factories are these chic tote bags.
Endorsed by Sanam Saeed and many more, these bags are ideal for almost all occasions.
Nonetheless, the most mindful way to stay eco-friendly in Karachi would be to recycle your own bags. While paper bags are a fantastic idea, a healthier approach would be to reuse them. Carry cloth bags in your everyday use bags or place jute bags in your car so it’s a minimal hassle for when you want to shop.
Maryam’s a Communication and Design major and an English and Comparative Literature minor at Habib University. She thoroughly enjoys reading South Asian Literature and is a Partition Literature enthusiast, who is often found admiring the origins of cultural theory.
While one may occasionally find her at events catering to art and culture in Karachi, she would much rather be home binge-watching British comedy.
Get in touch at [email protected]