5 October 2023

IOM3 responds to new bans & restrictions on single-use plastics

David Hughes CEng MIMMM, IOM3 Polymer Group Chair welcomes the legislation and reinforces the importance of a circular economy for polymers already in existence.

New restrictions from DEFRA on a range of single-use plastic items came into force on Sunday 1 October 2023, helping to cut litter and increase the reuse of valuable materials.

No business can now sell single-use plastic cutlery, balloon sticks nor polystyrene cups and food containers in England. The supply of single-use plastic plates, trays and bowls has also been restricted.

Ban and restrictions include

  • Online and over the counter sales and supply
  • Items from new and existing stock
  • Biodegradable, bio-based, compostable and recycled plastic
  • Items wholly or partly made from plastic, including coating or lining

David Hughes commented, saying, ‘Polymers are remarkable materials with a myriad of applications, and are a valuable resource that we must strive to protect. This policy is a good first step towards addressing the issue of plastic leakage into the environment.

The key to sustainability lies in stopping the unnecessary loss of valuable plastics. We should be aiming for a circular economy where we make the most of the plastic we already have by looking after materials and bring them back into circulation. By reusing the same molecules and taking care of these valuable resources, we can significantly reduce the need to extract new oil.'

Read more about the new bans and restrictions on polluting single-use plastics.

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