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02nd of August 2021Sustainability

New Zealand Single-Use Plastic Bans

The goal is to reduce plastic pollution on land and in the oceans and reduce the unsustainable use of fossil fuel to make packaging.

Single-Use Plastic bans are an effective strategy to speed up the transition towards a circular economy.


Single-use disposable packaging with a functional life of minutes should not be made with materials that will last hundreds of years. Plastic manufacture, pollution and the very limited recycling infrastructure is front of mind with consumers worldwide.

Foodservice businesses have the opportunity to lead the charge by choosing composting to recycle their food and packaging waste.

So, what products are included in the single-use plastic bans?

Legislation is currently being drafted and expected to be passed by 2022. Products included in the ban:

Stage 1: Late 2022
  • PROPOSED ITEMS INCLUDED IN THE BAN:
    • Polyvinyl chloride (PVC) meat trays
    • Rigid polystyrene (PS) takeaway packaging
    • Expanded polystyrene (EPS) food and beverage packaging including takeaway containers
    • Degradable plastic products (eg, oxo- and photo-degradable)
    • Plastic drink stirrers
    • Plastic stemmed cotton-buds, including PLA compostable cotton buds and drink stirrers
  • EXEMPT FROM THE BAN:
    • Polystyrene cup lids
    • Clear PET (1) including recycled PET (rPET)
    • Polystyrene cup lids
    • Reusable, paper and fibre-based alternatives, PET, and Polypropylene takeaway packaging
    • EPS bins used in cold-chain supply lines
    • Wooden stirrers and cotton bud stems made from paper or bamboo
Stage 2: Mid-2023
  • PROPOSED ITEMS INCLUDED IN THE BAN:
    • Plastic produce labels
    • Plastic produce bags (under 70 microns thick without handles used for the purpose of carrying fruit or vegetables from the point of sale.) Including compostable bags
    • Plastic plates, bowls, cutlery and straws, including compostable PLA versions of these items
  • EXEMPT FROM THE BAN:
    • Home compostable produce labels
    • Reusable bags
    • Plastic bowls made with attached lids
    • Plastic-lined paper plates, bowls, cutlery made of paper, cardboard, bamboo or sugarcane pulp
    •  
    • Straws made from bamboo, silicone or paper
    •  
Stage 3: Mid-2025
  • PROPOSED ITEMS INCLUDED IN THE BAN:
    • All other PVC food and beverage packaging and polystyrene food and beverage packaging
  • EXEMPT FROM THE BAN:
    • PET and Polypropylene plastics, which are recyclable, glass, cardboard or reusable/refillable packaging are potential alternatives.
More Information

What’s the Role of Bioplastic in a Sustainable Packaging Future?

While we fully support Single-Use Plastic bans for non-compostable plastics, we believe that some compostable bioplastic products have a role to play, and for the time being, we will continue to supply bioplastic cutlery across the other states.

More sustainable options for conventional plastic items are readily available. BioPak offers certified compostable, and carbon-neutral alternatives made from sustainably sourced and rapidly renewable materials like sugarcane, FSC™ certified wood or bioplastic materials made from plants.

Using compostable bioplastic packaging in the foodservice and hospitality industry undeniably helps increase the collection and composting of organic waste.

Single-use foodservice products including cups, cutlery and takeaway containers are often contaminated with food residues making conventional recycling impractical. Compostable packaging allows food waste and packaging to be composted together.

Bioplastics do not solve the problem of littering. However, together with consumer education campaigns coupled with an effective collection and recycling infrastructure, these materials are less likely to end up in the environment.
BioPak, together with the compost industry, have diverted tonnes of food waste and compostable packaging from landfill, including bioplastic cutlery. In Australia and New Zealand, over 20 compost facilities accept bioplastic packaging that is certified compostable.

Bioplastics are an essential part of the circular economy and a fast-growing, innovative industry that has the potential to help us decouple economic growth from resource depletion and environmental impacts.

> DOWNLOAD BIOPAK ALTERNATIVES FLYER
> DOWNLOAD BIOPAK COMPOSTABLE CATALOGUE

 

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