Takeaways, restaurants and cafes set to be ‘banned’ from using sauce sachets, milk cartons and single-use cutlery and told to find non-plastic alternatives
- Small plastic sachets for sauces could be banned under environmental plans
- Environment Secretary George Eustice aims to include them on a banned list
- Research shows sachets are rarely recycled as they are hard to isolate and clean
- But campaigners say struggling businesses should not be lumbered with costs
Single-use plastic sachets for ketchup, mayo and vinegar could soon be banned in the UK.
The move would affect takeaways, restaurants and cafes, with mini milk containers among the outlawed items as businesses are encouraged to find eco-friendly alternatives.
But it has been met with a mixed reaction – with some critics arguing single-use face masks do more harm to the environment.
And some social media users pointed to the use of recyclable glass condiment bottles, pointing out they were used long before plastic containers for ketchup, mayonnaise and milk.
Small plastics sachets for red sauce, mayo and vinegar could soon be banned under plans from Environment Secretary George Eustice
The move would affect takeaways, restaurants and cafes, with mini milk containers among the outlawed items as businesses are encouraged to find eco-friendly alternatives. But it has been met with a mixed reaction – with some critics arguing single-use face masks do more harm to the environment
According to The Sun, Environment Secretary George Eustice aims to include disposable plastic cutlery and plates to the barred list, which so far has seen an end to plastic straws and stirrers.
Mr Eustice last year stated that single-use sachets ‘can cause considerable harm to the marine and terrestrial environment when disposed of incorrectly’.
Evidence points out that they are rarely recycled, as their small size makes them difficult to isolate and clean.
A source close to Mr Eustice told The Sun: ‘They’re an obvious contender for a ban. There’s no reason most restaurants can’t use big bottles instead of sachets.’
Christopher Snowdon, head of lifestyle economics at the Institute for Economic Affairs (IEA), said: ‘The government’s appetite for petty regulation and micro-management is boundless.
‘With the economy in the doldrums and inflation rising, banning things seems to be a displacement activity for politicians.
‘It never seems to occur to them that placing endless regulation on businesses is a large part of the reason the economy is so sclerotic in the first place.’
Andrew Crook, deputy chair of the British Takeaway Campaign, said: ‘It’s right that the nation reduces its plastic consumption, but we’ve got to do so without adding another costly burden on the smallest restaurants, many of which are struggling to keep their doors open.
‘Our favourite takeaways wouldn’t be the same without the sauces on the side, so the Government should give small restaurants time to find affordable, non-plastic alternatives, and not lumber them with other changes too soon either, like the proposed cutlery and polystyrene cup ban.’
Other users on Twitter were even more critical of the proposals.
Evidence suggests sachets are rarely recycled as their small size makes them difficult to isolate and clean
Jackie Ashley tweeted: ‘Still flying round the world in planes. Sill no coherent plan for recycling and they’re worrying about sauce sachets. You couldn’t make it up.
‘I don’t want to use a communal sauce bottle after people have had their dirty mitts are all over it. Very unhygienic.’
Joe Patr added: ‘It’s quite ironic, given that many places like Wetherspoon actually went back from multi-use bottles to single use sachets as a result of concern over Covid, despite even then us knowing that surface transmission was unlikely.’
The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs has been contacted for comment.
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