Ban on single use plastic rescue for the ocean and humans

Next year, disposable plastics will be banned in all EU member states. The plastic ban is part of a European long-term plan to combat plastic in the ocean. Plastic causes pollution, threatens marine life and it also enters our food chain because the fish ingest it. Of all the waste on European beaches from the sea, 49 percent is disposable plastic, 26 percent comes from fishing nets, and only 18 percent is non-plastic.

Of the disposable plastic, drinking bottles, caps, cigarette butts and cotton buds are most commonly found on the beaches. All member states have until 3 July 2021 to adopt the ban as law. From that date, the ten most commonly found plastic products on European beaches will be banned throughout Europe. There are also rules for when ‘bio-based’ and ‘biodegradable’ can be printed on packaging. Now this is not the case and that is very confusing for consumers.

Of all sectors, the catering industry in particular will have to deal with this and will have to switch to alternatives. Bagasse, a residual product from sugar cane, is often mentioned as an alternative to plastic, because it is compostable. But paper or cardboard are also widely used alternatives.