The British Independent Retailers Association (Bira) is urging retailers to start preparing for the single-use plastic ban coming into force on 1 October.
Bira CEO Andrew Goodacre advices retailers to “really understand the new regulations” and start “planning to use up old stock.”
“Retailers will need to start now (if not done so already) to source replacement stock – I have seen increasing use of paper bags and reusable nets in food shops,” he continued.
“The message is clear, get to know the rules, start planning and tell the customer you have made the changes. It might even be possible to turn this cost into an opportunity,” Goodacre added.
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Bira warns that some retailers are either unaware or unprepared for the upcoming change to regulations or single-use plastics on plates, bowls, trays, containers, cutlery and balloon sticks which comes into force in just a few weeks time.
The new rules outlined by the government mean that businesses will face stringent regulations regarding single-use plastics, for online and over-the-counter sales and supply, item from new and existing stock, and include all types of single-use plastic, including biodegradable, compostable and recycled.
Compliance with these regulations is essential, as breaches can result in fines for business owners and local authorities will be carrying out inspections.
Retailers have already been making changes to their stock. Aldi recently removed all single-use cutlery from its Food to Go range in a bid to remove 10.5 million wooden forks from circulation.