The Scottish Government is committed to reaching its target of net zero emissions by 2045. Therefore, in order to achieve this, they are looking at how to reduce waste and are calling for evidence from those in the retail, food and hospitality sector on how to reduce the consumption of single use food containers and other single use items. As noted in our recent article, The Scottish Government has already introduced legislation for a ban on single use plastics but are keen to extend this and ensure that there is a focus on single use products more generally, especially food containers.
The evidence will help to dictate any future policy changes for single use products, alongside single use plastics. The call for evidence asks for:
- Evidence on the size and nature of the market for, and the environmental impact of, certain single use items in Scotland;
- Effective action in Scotland or other nations to reduce the use of certain single use items;
- Barriers to implementing policy measures; and
- Impact of policy measures on people and businesses.
Whilst this call for evidence is primarily focused on single use plastic food containers, the Scottish Government is also keen to collect evidence on all of the following:
- Single-use food containers;
- Plastic bowls, trays and platters;
- Period and incontinence products including plastic tampon applicators and incontinence pads;
- Plastic sachets e.g. condiment sachets used in hospitality settings;
- Plastic tobacco filters; and
- Plastic packaging on fruit and vegetables.
The Scottish Government's recent consultation follows similar consultations in both Northern Ireland and England on banning single use plastic food containers which ended in January and February 2022 respectively. We are still awaiting the outcomes of these consultations to see whether this may inform any future policy decisions made in Scotland.
The closing date for responses in Scotland is 30 June 2022 and the response form can be found here.
Should you require any advice in relation to how this might affect your business please contact Caroline Colliston or your usual DWF contact.