Restaurants Canada reacts to potential plastics ban

Restaurants across Canada may need to prepare finding alternatives for items such as packaging or cutlery if the ban on single-use plastics comes into effect.

On Monday morning, the Trudeau government announced its goal of placing the ban as early as 2021. Their plan surrounds banning items such as plastic straws, cutlery and packaging, items that are used by many Canadian restaurants.

And with the growing demand for food delivery and takeout services, it will mean lots of research and discussions for the next couple years.

Restaurants Canada Vice-President for Western Canada Mark von Schellwitz believes there needs to be a balance between both sides. For him and their member restaurants, they’ll want to make sure there’s enough

infrastructure in place for recyclable and compostable items.

“We’re willing to do our part, but I think another big part of this issue is public education,” said von Schellwitz. “Once the particular packaging item leaves a store, we don’t have control of what that customer does with the packaging.”

According to von Schellwitz, over 50 per cent of their member restaurants have voluntarily taken action to environmental sustainability within their businesses prior to the announcement of the potential ban.

It could pose a problem for businesses who will have to meet the needs of customers without completely eroding their extremely thin profit margins.

“We want to focus on compostable and recyclable alternatives for takeout packaging, not to ban them altogether,” he said. “We’re going to keep working with governments to come up with solutions that make sense for the environment, but also allow us to service those customers that want takeout and home delivery.”

A recent survey found that 30 per cent of 18-34 year old’s are increasingly replacing carry out orders with delivery options. 22 per cent of the population uses third-party delivery more than ever before.


Twitter: @MoisesCanalesJr


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