Plastic ban may increase takeaway prices

Kebab shops along Cardiff's most well-known takeaway street have stated that they are prepared for a moratorium on single-use plastics. However, this could result in higher prices for takeaways.

In Wales, it is now illegal to litter with disposable plastic cutlery and containers, among other commonly littered products.

In recent weeks, numerous merchants reported a scramble to acquire more expensive eco-friendly alternatives.

It parallels comparable restrictions in England and Scotland. Monday's alterations, according to the Welsh government, will help combat "the damaging flow of plastic waste" into the environment.

At Fellas kebab establishment, manager Sam Raslan stated that they were utilizing their final polystyrene trays prior to the implementation of the new restrictions. However, it now costs them more than three times as much as before.

In addition to dramatic increases in ingredient and utility costs, it has led to disputes with customers over higher takeout prices, he said.

A similar prohibition on disposable plastics went into effect in England last month, adding to the difficulty of obtaining eco-friendly products.

The proprietor of Rotana Grill House, Nasir Ahmadzai, reported that council officials had walked up and down the street to raise awareness of the prohibition. He mentioned that he was 100 percent confident that they are prepared, noting that the store had recently converted to wooden cutlery and recyclable cartons.

On the list are disposable plastic plates, cutlery, drink stirrers, cotton swabs, and balloon poles. Cups and food containers made of expanded or foamed extruded polystyrene are also prohibited.

Plastic straws are also prohibited, though there are exceptions for individuals who require them for safety or independence. If businesses, nonprofits, and public institutions such as schools and councils distribute or display these items, they risk perpetrating a crime.

This is the beginning of the prohibition. The next one prohibits single-use carrier bags, polystyrene lids for beverages, and oxo-degradable plastic food containers.

According to the Welsh government, this will go into effect prior to the conclusion of the Senedd term in 2026.

Businesses could switch to disposable products made of paper, cardboard, or wood, according to the Welsh government's guidance on the new law. Plates with any type of plastic coating have been prohibited as well.

Even better for the environment would be to promote the use of reusable materials and allow consumers to bring their own containers whenever possible.

Dr. Rebecca Colley-Jones, whose company Ynys Resources advises companies on recycling and sustainability, stated that transforming our "throwaway society" was the most pressing issue.

Aberaeron, located on the coast of Ceredigion, is one of several communities in Wales striving for plastic-free status, a distinction bestowed by the environmental advocacy organization Surfers Against Sewage.

Clare McCowan opened her cafe seven years ago and made it a point from the beginning to avoid using single-use plastics.

She mentioned that they may be more aware of the problem due to their proximity to the ocean. It is significantly more expensive than polystyrene or plastic containers, which are more affordable.

A single cardboard cake box can cost up to £1, while a cup costs approximately 50p. However, she reported that consumers were on board and willing to pay a little more to support the business. She expressed optimism that the prohibition would "move everyone in the right direction."