Sal Leaf Dinnerware
• What is Sal Leaf?
Sal Tree (Shorea Robusta) mostly growing in the Indian Subcontinent. Common like other tree leaves, Sal Tree leaves are biodegraded and compost in nature after the end of their life cycle. This leave are looks thin but its strong, sturdy and remain green in color for longer period. These unique Natural characteristics and Nature gift to human beings allow us to use dry Sal Tree Leaf for a kitchenware item.
• Invention by course of time
From centuries, it's very common that people belonging to Indian Continent are used to use various leaves for ritual purposes and food try. The varieties and options of these products available in today’s world are one masterpieces innovation. Social awareness and affordability enable it spread out throughout the world and add commercial value to the manufacturers
• How it’s made?
It has a simple manufacturing process; dried fallen Sal leaf thoroughly washed. Knots and unwanted part cut and removed. These prepared leaves hand stitched (using Sticks or cotton thread) and put to gather to form large round serving plate.
To give additional strength and sturdy look, a recycle kraft paper used underneath and heat pressed to form in various shapes and sizes of plates, bowls, and platters. However, it does NOT contain any chemical to compose the raw material, colour, or wax coating on the surface.
The collecting leaves from Jungle, sorting, storage, and preparation is a major challenge for commercial production. The best quality of leaves is only available in the Northern part of India. There is 50% manual labour involved during the entire production cycle. This indirectly generates employment in the rural area. Government of India policy and local NGO encourage to produce export quality sustainable natural disposable products.
• Truly Natural
a. The basic raw material is naturally fallen Sal leaves and leaves are themselves bio-degradable, compostable by the course of their life cycle. It is an absolute zero waste and minimizes carbon footprint.
b. Truly natural unique colour and texture on the surface; NOT contain any artificial colour, or wax coating on the surface.
c. It gives a classy & ethnic look when the meals are served on this plate.
• Myth vs Fact
Sal Leaves tableware products are relatively new in the market compared to typical plastic, Styrofoam, and paper products. There are lots of myths and curiosity about the product that hides the reality.
• Tree Cutting to get the leaves:
o It very common fact that in the fall season leaves naturally fall from trees and have new leaves in the spring season. These fallen leaves would be naturally discomposed in nature in a few months. However, the tree remains as is. Similarly, Sal Tree’s naturally dry fallen leaves collected to produce a kitchenware product without harming nature. NO Tree cutting involves getting the Sal Leaves, but the fact is Sal tree is well preserved and protect to get the leaves in the following seasons.
• Colour on the surface:
o Sal leaves are majority in green colour in wide range of light to dark tones. Sometimes it has brown colour mix with green colour depend on regional tree and weather condition. However, all these colour tone by its natural character and NOT contain any artificial colour, or wax coating to have colour on the surface.
o Each Sal leaves has its unique variety of natural green/brown colour tones. Sometimes it has a dark black spot in a dotted or odd shape. Its not decay but colour tone variations is by nature and it's OK to use. It will NOT impact the food quality or test or impact health
• Leaf Stitching
o The Sal leaves relatively small about 6” to 8” in size. These leaves are hand sticked using small sticks or by swing machine using cotton thread. Both stitching material stick, and cotton thread are OK to use for food serving,
• Wave layered edges
o Naturally dried Sal leaves (top layer) along with recycle kraft paper (bottom layer) are heat pressed at a very high degree temperature to form a variety of plates and bowls shape. The machine dye-cut at gives layered wave edges shape itself. It's absolutely NO product defect.
• OK to Use
o Each Sal leaves has its unique variety of natural green, brown colour tones. Sometimes it has a dark black spot in a dotted or odd shape. These are colour tone variations is by nature and it's OK to use. It will NOT impact the food quality or test or impact health
• Bacterial impurities on Leaves surface
o The naturally fallen Sal Leaves have been thoroughly washed and wet leaves have been heated pressed along with kraft paper at a very high degree temperature (Approximate 200c to 300 c) up to 1 minute. This high-temperature product gets completely free of bacteria, fungus or any impurities on the surface and is OK to use for serving food.
o Microwave safe for ONLY for food warming up to 1 minute (60 seconds)
o Not safe for Oven or to use as a cooking utensil
o NOT safe for machine wash or handwash
o Recommended to use as food storage container up to 6-8 hours
o Store in a cold and dry place