Paper Bag Day is celebrated annually on 12 July. The day aims to promote the use of paper bags instead of plastic ones. The increasing use of plastic has led to alarming plastic pollution levels. On this day, people are encouraged to switch over to paper bags and do their bit to prevent plastic pollution.
In 1852, Francis Wolle invented the first machine to mass-produce paper bags. Then in 1871, inventor Margaret E. Knight created a machine that made flat-bottomed paper bags. Later on, Charles Stilwell created a machine that made square-bottomed paper bags with pleated sides, making it easier to carry and fold them.
The paper bags with handles that are in use now, were invented by Walter Deubener in 1912. These paper bags were however replaced by plastic bags, which were introduced in the 1970s as a cheaper alternative.
With conservationists and activists ringing alarm bells about the increasing use of plastic and its adverse effects on the environment, paper bags have made a comeback.
Millions of people around the world have stopped using plastic bags and switched to paper bags. However, many people have still been using plastic bags without any concern for the environment. This is the reason why we mark Paper Bag Day on 12 July. The purpose is to raise awareness among the people about its use. Paper bags are an eco-friendly alternative that help reduce plastic pollution levels.
What are the benefits of using paper bags?
- Paper bags are 100 percent recyclable and can decompose in approximately a month.
- These bags are not harmful for pets or other animals in comparison to plastic bags.
- Since the bags are biodegradable, they can be used to make compost.
- They are inexpensive.
- They can help reduce plastic pollution levels and can even be used multiple times, unlike a single-use plastic bag.