One of the most commendable activities of Lakmé Fashion Week Summer/Resort 2020 was the coming together of Lakmé Fashion Week (IMG Reliance) with Award-Winning Environmentalist, Afroz Shah for the Circular Solution for Multi-Layered Packaging (MLP) Waste Project. Afroz Shah’s fame is globally renowned. He was honoured with the UN Environment’s Champion of the Earth, Indian of the year 2017, CNN Hero 2019 awards.
Multi-Layered Packaging (MLP) comprises a thin foil of aluminium, that is sandwiched, or laminated in a matrix of paper and/or plastic layers, which makes it difficult for recycling. Some of the most common household products including chips or snack packets, biscuit and chocolate wrappers, toiletry sachets, beauty product packaging, etc. often comprise multi-layered packaging that aren’t typically recycled and generally finds their way into landfills.
The endeavour of this project is to illustrate a creative and circular solution to MLP waste and inspire and enable brands and organizations to consider this, as an alternative material to virgin plastics and/or traditional materials. As part of this project, Afroz Shah Foundation shall play a crucial role in collecting and segregating MLP from the coastline areas. IMG Reliance shall be the platform and bridge the gap for design interventions, while the United Nations in India will support as a knowledge partner to help engage with relevant stakeholders.
Speaking on the collaboration, Afroz Shah said, “It’s an important collaboration between Afroz Shah Foundation, UN and Lakmé Fashion Week. This collaboration is unique in the sense that it will work on the hearts and minds of the people by portraying waste as a problem solver itself.”
The impressive installation made from MLP was unveiled and Afroz Shah spoke eloquently about the issues related to MLP waste and its possible solutions. He spoke passionately about the planet, the fauna fighting for survival and the selfish activities of humans, who are exploiting nature to the very core. He urged people to take a step in reducing multi-layered packaging waste.
Renata Lok Dessallien, UN Environment, emphasised on how MLP is deadly and extremely harmful for the environment. She stated that there was no single solution that would solve the problem, but it’s a gradual process. She further said that Recycling starts with everyone and is a complex problem, which requires deep thinking particularly in India where packaging is done from minus to 50 degrees, that makes it difficult to recycle, but it is not an impossible task.
Jaspreet Chandok, Head Lifestyle Business, IMG Reliance, added that not enough was being done to tackle the issues caused by MLP. The panel unveiled a very thought-provoking installation made out of multi-layered packaging depicting the horrifying reality of plastic pollution.