Following last year’s implementation of the plastic tax legislation, and the ban of plastic stirrers and straws in 2020, Bidfood’s Catering Supplies team has been busy looking at ways to support customers in making informed choices ahead of the single-use plastic ban coming into effect from the 1st October 2023.
It’s estimated that England uses a colossal 2.7 billion items of single-use cutlery, most of which are plastic, and a staggering 721 million single-use plates per year, with only 10% getting recycled. These single-use items, as well as certain polystyrene cups and food-to-go containers, will be included in the ban, meaning they cannot be purchased from any business.
Placing sustainability at the heart of everything they do, Bidfood’s Catering Supplies is continuing on its journey to drive a circular economy by helping its customers reduce, reuse, recycle and renew.
In preparation for the single-use plastics ban, the team has released a ‘Plastic Ban’ guide suggesting the alternative products their customers can switch to using, making the transition as easy as possible for them. The guide will also promote recyclable plastics and their correct waste streams, as not all plastics are included in the ban.
In addition to their guide, Bidfood’s Catering Supplies will provide further support through a series of blogs and a dedicated webpage where readers can find top-line information regarding the ban and access to their support materials.
Bidfood’s Catering Supplies team recently partnered with award-winning sustainable packaging company, Notpla, adding six of their seaweed-coated food-to-go packaging to their range.
The brand, which was recently awarded the Earthshot Prize by the Prince of Wales, has designed the seaweed-lined boxes to biodegrade naturally. They are both home compostable and recyclable, leaving no harmful traces in the environment at the end of life.
With a number of sustainability-based goals set for 2025, Bidfood’s Catering Supplies has made headway by removing all EPS (expanded polystyrene) products from their disposables range last year. They have also introduced a range of innovative products such as paper cutlery, PE cling film and Flexsil-Lids.
Michaela Bateman, Category & Marketing Manager for Catering Supplies at Bidfood said: “The upcoming plastic ban needn’t feel like a big change for our customers as we have already been working in the background to present them with some great alternatives.
“It’s our passion to support our customers with products that have a sustainable end-of-life solution that drives us as a team. Introducing a new generation of packaging like Notpla’s seaweed-lined boxes and Vegware’s paper cutlery will help them phase out unnecessary plastics.
“While the ban means the end of single-use plastics, we really want our guide to highlight the good, recyclable plastics too. As always, we want to provide a product that’s fit for purpose and with a guaranteed waste stream.
“There is a lot more work to do in the packaging world, but clearly legislation centred on sustainability is encouraging innovation and I’m looking forward to seeing what the future holds for packaging and kitchen supplies.”
For more help, tips and support on the single-use plastic ban, please visit: https://www.bidfood.co.uk/single-use-plastics-ban-2023/