TAPARI: A traditional leaf plate!

10, Nov 2020 | nepaltraveller.com

Known for its traditional significance, Tapari has a good demand in the market due to its eco-friendly usage.


In the current context, where the entire world is discussing various pathways to make our every action more environment friendly, the South Asian countries like Nepal and India have their own traditional values that directly contribute to this cause. A traditional way of serving in disposable plates made of leaves is now not just limited to our culture. This product mostly made from mature green leaves of the Sal tree (Shorea Robusta) is known as “tapari”, “bota” or “duna” in Nepali. They are produced in various sizes with the shape of a plate or even a bowl.

When Nepalese hear the word “tapari/ bota”, many often visualize a tapari full of local momo or leaf plate filled with various traditional delicacies whereas other people associate it with cultural and festival significance. Such products are widely used as small containers for various requirements like ‘bati’, ‘chaamal (rice)’, or offerings to God during rituals. Now even various fast-food chains are using this product as it is easily disposable and even eco-friendly.



The Sal tree, also known as the Ashoka tree has relevance in the Buddhist tradition. The historical story of Gautam Buddha recalls the pictures of Queen Maya giving him birth under the Ashoka tree in a garden of Lumbini. It is also said that four pairs of Sal trees growing around the Buddha’s bed suddenly turned white when he died.



The traditional taparis are made by gathering the leaves from the Sal tree and stitching them together with fine bamboo sticks called sinka.  A lot of effort goes into practicing and excelling in the skill of making them.

Also, due to its growing demand, various manufacturers produce them mechanically too. Due to its eco-friendly nature, its demand is not only limited to national, or southern Asian regions but they even supply to European nations. 

Our traditional product is helping us to slowly make a change for a better environment.
So, the next time you are buying disposable plates, don’t forget our traditional Taparis. GO GREEN!



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