Japan Introduces Deer-Friendly Bags To Prevent Them From Dying Of Plastic Ingestion

Plastic has become a very big concern to the health of the environment and all the animals who live in it. In order to help the deer of Japan, an organization of animal advocates called Fed Up has come up with a genius way of saving the deer from eating plastic.

The group has devised a paper created from rice bran that is 100% edible for deer if they accidentally ingest it. Fed Up came up with the idea after last year when a deer died as a result of having nearly 9 pounds of plastic stuck in its stomach.

Ingestion of plastic is a major problem for the more than 1,200 deer who live at Nara Park. The deer are protected by law and are only fed special sugar-free crackers that come without plastic. However, there are many visitors that are believed to be feeding deer other food items and then leaving the plastic packaging behind. These then get accidentally consumed by deer.

Given this danger, the Nara residents chose to come up with a solution. That is when Takashi Nakamura, owner of a paper company in the city of Nara, began working closely with both a designer and a cosmetic wholesaler in order to create a bag made out of rice bran.

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According to the BBC, not only is the bag deer-friendly, it’s also environmentally friendly since it can be recycled alongside milk cartons. Plus, if an animal were to accidentally ingest a portion, it is completely harmless.

Fed Up has already sold about 3,500 bags to six different local companies, including a pharmacy and a bank. While they’re such a great idea, they do not come cheap. Each rice bran bag costs about 100 yen to produce. But while they may be much pricer than their plastic alternative, the positive impact that they have on the environment is something that cannot have a price tag placed on it.

With that in mind, Fed Up is hopeful that more businesses and consumers will see the value of the bags and will be willing to join the good fight in combating the plastic epidemic that is affecting the deer of Nara.

Anastasia is an American writer and journalist living in Dublin, Ireland. Her Twitter is @AnastasiaArell5.

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