England to ban single-use plastic cutlery and plates

Originally published at: England to ban single-use plastic cutlery and plates | Boing Boing


None of the linked articles seem to say whether alternatives like compostable cutlery will be allowed. I’m guessing yes, but not all “compostable” products currently on the market are quite as environmentally friendly as the marketing would imply so I hope that gets appropriate regulation as well.


I find chopsticks to be preferable to plastic cutlery. Actually keep them in my travel bag for eating take out in the hotel.


Yeah the second paragraph makes the proposal sound less ambitious than the headline suggests:

Thérèse Coffey, the environment secretary, is poised to unveil plans to phase out the items and replace them with biodegradable alternatives

That’s a step in the right direction but hardly a revolution. A real waste-reduction plan would look something like “all restaurants with indoor seating are required to serve customers with reusable plates and cutlery.”


At work I use plastic cutlery (the metal fork I brought from home disappeared so I didn’t bring more). A “single-use” plastic fork usually lasts me 3-6 months of regular use and wash before it breaks


Canada did the same last year, and it began taking effect this week. Canada’s ban is quite aggressive. It phases in over a few years, ending with it being illegal to even ship those products through Canada.

Initially it’s just that businesses can no longer give out plastic cutlery, bags, or packaging. Soon you won’t be able to buy them in stores either.

In Canada’s case, the ban includes so-called compostable plastics because those are a lie.


Well plates you can use paper, which IMO are better anyway.

I rarely use single use utensils, but they do come in handy some times. Every one learn to eat with bamboo chop sticks? They probably make stuff from wood or paper like stuff, but I am sure they are more expensive than the plastic ones.


Key West tried to ban single-use flatware, plastic straws and plastic shopping bags. city passed the ordinance. then came ron “i’m the fascist governor of this state, goddammit” desantis who got his duma state legislature to pass state law superseding “home rule” so that municipalities and counties cannot override the whims of monied interests (the law actually states no municipality can make a law that would cause a business to lose money). Publix refuses to let even one store eschew the use of plastic bags and they are huge donor to desantis.


Gotta love waste and environmental destruction as virtue-sginalling. Rolling coal spork


Not a bad option, but not practical for things like soup or yogurt. I have a reusable plastic spork like this
(the proper kind, not the spoon-with-notches kind :grin:).

The similar ones in titanium, which will outlast any plastic (and me), are the most environmentally friendly choice, and tempting apart from the price. But that’s the cost of being responsible.


For some reason I’d feel silly carrying one of those around in my pocket but slightly less silly carrying one of these:



Maybe forks, knives, and even straws can be made of soft wood or bamboo like disposable chopsticks. At least they would be biodegradable.

single use anything are a problem at scale


Disposable wood chopsticks are great for crafting as well as eating, and anytime you need to tweeze something. It’s not always easy to carry around your own silverware (for example, bring a butter knife or fork through TSA and see how far you get.) There needs to be an alternative that is a. cheap, b. biodegradable if it needs to be discarded, and c. fit for purpose.

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I have two sets of these that go in my carry bag when traveling. They are lightweight, quite compact, feel ok in the hand and the case is useful if you can’t wash them right away. The knife is TSA ok-they’ve never even asked to see the box opened.

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it’d be interesting to charge a deposit on reusable utensils. neater still if there was a standard so you could take sny utensils back to any restaurant

i think the thing with biodegradable, is that they really arent all that biodegradable. so the waste still accumulates


Here in Australia we’re doing the mostly the same thing (not sure about shipping through Australia), with slightly different rules per state.

Ban has been slowly being phased in. My state details are at

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