The Association of Corrugated Case (Manufacturers) of Telangana (ACCT) has decided to observe Black Week from 24 to 31 March, 2021 against the unprecedented price hike of paper and raw material.

Corrugated box manufacturers are crucial supply chain partners for all FMCG and durable manufacturers. All items one sees on store shelves, be it food, healthcare, cosmetics, medicines, electronics, electrical, and various items a common man’s daily needs reach the shelf in a Corrugated Box. There is no other cost effective and ecofriendly packaging product for transportation of virtually all products.

All box plants are MSMEs and offer direct employment to 3 lakhs and 5 lakh indirect job opportunities. All commodity prices have sky-rocketed and particularly Kraft paper prices have doubled in last few months pushing the industry towards closure. The humongous and almost daily increases in prices of paper have crippled the industry.

“Kraft Paper and board prices are increasing relentlessly since November 2020. There is an increase of 80 to 90 per cent so far. Entrepreneurs are suffering immensely due to the unabated increase in input costs,’’ ACCT President, MVM Bharat said in a statement.

The situation is critical and the very survival of the industry is under threat, he added, “We draw the attention of the government to ease the availability of kraft paper by restricting export of kraft paper, so that domestic requirements are met.”

The Government should live upto “Atma Nirbhar Bharat” policy and save the corrugated box industry from closure. Any disruption in supply chain will be detrimental to the recovery of economy from Covid impact and cause largescale dislocation of supply chain and also discontent among masses due to non-availability of essential goods that need corrugated boxes to reach the customers from manufacturers.

Box plants are in a precarious situation; one side paper mills, in unison, are increasing prices at regular intervals and on the other buyers of Boxes are not supporting MSME Corrugated Box suppliers by giving timely and adequate increase in prices of boxes, commensurate with increases in costs of production. ACCT appeals to all buyers to support their cause in their hour of despair.