New Zealand bans plastic product bags from tomorrow
WELLINGTON, June 30 (IANS) Supermarkets in New Zealand are preparing for the second phase of a national plastic ban from Saturday, which will see more single-use plastics phased out.
The Environment Ministry said on Friday that the second round will ban plastic bags, stickers, plates, bowls, cutlery and straws.
These plastics will be pulled from shelves from Saturday, with companies potentially fined up to NZ$100,000 ($60,853) if they fail to comply.
This round of national bans targets single-use and hard-to-recycle items, which were expected to stop 150 million bags of produce from reaching landfills each year, according to the Environment Ministry.
Last October, it banned the sale or manufacture of single-use plastic cotton buds, drink stirrers, and most plastic meat trays in its first phase-out.
“Stopping the sale of these plastic products will reduce waste to landfill, improve our recycling systems, and encourage alternatives that are reusable or environmentally responsible,” Environment Secretary David Parker said last September.
On average, each New Zealander sends about 750 kilograms of waste per year to landfill. Parker said some products cannot be recycled and are unnecessary.
Other PVC and polystyrene food and beverage packaging will be banned from mid-2025, according to the three-year removal plan.