KOCHI: The blanket ban imposed by the state government on flex boards and banners has been opposed by the Sign Printing Industries Association (SPIA), the single platform of sign printing unit owners in Kerala.
The ban will put thousands of families associated with the sector in deep crisis, the SPIA said.
"There are over 1,000 sign printing units in the state providing jobs directly and indirectly to over three lakh people. The units have been set up spending Rs.23 lakh to Rs.25 crore," said Vijayaraj Anirudhan, state general secretary of SPIA.
Since flex banner is the cheapest medium for sign printing, it is being extensively used by small and medium industries for publicity. Flex is a totally recyclable material and used flex boards are recycled on a large scale, according to SPIA.
"A total of 16 flex manufacturing companies operate in the country and all of them have recycling facility. The association has set up a flex recycling plant in Mysore at a cost of Rs.37 lakh with a capacity to process five tonnes of flex materials. If the state government allows, we are ready to shift the facility to Kerala," he added.
Though cloth, paper and other eco-friendly materials can be used for temporary and small banners, flex is the only medium now available for erecting big hoardings and permanent display boards, he said.
"The association has been using only eco-friendly publicity materials for temporary use, but flex cannot be totally avoided for hoardings and permanent boards," said SPIA office- bearers.
While supporting the government's zero waste initiative, the association has sought permission to set up a recycling plant in the state. "The licence of the units which are not members of flex recycling cluster should not be renewed from next year. The responsibility of recycling expired flex boards should be entrusted with the association," they added....