Government has given its clearance to reservation norms for jute packaging materials for jute year 2021-22, under which 100 per cent food grains and 20 per cent of sugar will be packed in jute bags as per the provisions of under Jute Packaging Material Act, 1987.
The decision, which was cleared by the Union Cabinet on Wednesday, is likely to benefit 3,70,000 workers employed in jute mills and ancillary units.
The reservation norms are expected to boost domestic production of raw jute and jute packaging material in India, thereby, making India self-reliant in consonance with the government's Aatmanirbhar Bharat campaign.
Jute industry in India is spread across eastern states like West Bengal, Bihar, Odisha and Assam among others.
In West Bengal it is a major industry as 75 per cent of the total production of the jute industry is jute sacking bags, of which 90 per cent is supplied to the Food Corporation of India (FCI) and state procurement agencies.
Government purchases jute sacking bags worth approximately Rs 8,000 crore annually, for packing of foodgrains, thus ensuring guaranteed market for the produce of jute farmers and workers.