How Are Leaf Dishes Made?
Leaf plates have been used for hundreds of years in Nepal as a normal practical solution to serve food on for cultural rituals and festivals. Products made from Sal produce are locally known to have high purity and therefore religious significance. The dishes are made from the leaves of these Sal trees (Shorea Robusta) which grow in the lower altitude and jungle regions of Nepal. Nowadays they are still used for street food in Nepal and are becoming a fantastic solution to plastic pollution globally
How exactly are they made?
The process of manufacturing leaf dishes involves a few steps:
First local villagers in the Nawalparasi district of Nepal collect the leaves from the Sal Trees, they either use their hands or long bamboo sticks to do this.
The leaves are then bagged up, taken back from the jungle, washed and left in the sunlight room to dry.
After a few days the leaves are hand-stitched together into the required larger shape by the team. To avoid using glue, natural bamboo fibres are used for this which prevents the individual leaves pealing up and holds the structural shape of the product.
In the next stage the stitched leaves are laid onto a mould press usually in 4 layers, and using the appropriate press the plates are squashed into existence while being heated at approximately 150°C to help the bond and also sterilise any potential contaminants. Each dish is left in the press for around 20 seconds with around 50kg of force pushing onto it.
The plates are then removed and left for a few hours before sorting and packaging.
If you eat your lunch from Tapari leafware you’ll be impressed with the way they’re intricately hand-stitched. Not only do they have this talking point, in use there is no doubt on their practicality – they can be used for all types of food including liquids, and you can throw them away after a picnic, guilt-free!
Tapari as a leaf dish manufacturer have designed their products to meet high quality standards through an optimised manufacturing process with hygienic conditions, sterilisation, and trained operational personnel. Products sold by Tapari have passed the UKAS certification and are guaranteed to be 100% safe and sanitary with strict quality assurance systems in place.