UK Government considering “latte levy”

636513468569920287coffecupideas.jpg

12 Jan 2018 --- A proposal to introduce a 25 pence so-called “latte levy” on disposable coffee cups will be considered by the UK Government as Britain sharpens its focus on environmental policy and ways to cut down on plastics.

Britain’s Environment Secretary Michael Gove says he is open to the idea which has been put forward by the Commons Environmental Audit Committee. Ministers recommend a 25 pence charge on disposable coffee cups in a bid to stem the waste caused by mountains of throw-away cups being used and binned every day in the UK.

There are also wider calls for a total ban on non-recyclable throw-away cups unless manufacturers can come up with another innovation that makes them recyclable.

There are complications with recycling disposable coffee cups because the cup’s polyethylene coating must be removed before the cup can be recycled. The issue has been gaining traction over the last couple of years with many of the larger high street coffee chains introducing campaigns and promotions on reusable coffee cups.

Gove has said that many consumers are already prepared to pay more to help the environment, although stressed that the effectiveness of introducing such a policy needs to be examined further.

Five pence plastic bag levy could be expanded
Meanwhile, the British Soft Drinks Association has welcomed the UK Government’s launch of its 25 Year Environment Plan for England which includes a potential extension to the five pence charge for plastic carrier bags to cover all retailers in England.

Under British Prime Minister Theresa May’s new plan, supermarkets will also be encouraged to introduce “plastic-free” aisles and taxes, while charges on single-use plastic items will be considered as part of planned Government consultations.

It is all part of a broader initiative to eliminate all avoidable plastic waste within 25 years, by 2042. Avoidable plastic waste includes plastic bags, straws, coffee stirrers, soda and water bottles and the majority of food packaging. There is also some discussion that over the forthcoming years, other types of plastic could be subject to further levies.

May announced the plan to close the exemption that means retailers with fewer than 250 employees do not have to charge customers 5 pence (US$0.07) for a single-use plastic bag. The five pence charge was introduced in 2015 and led to an 83 percent reduction in UK plastic bag use in the first year.

Director General at the British Soft Drinks Association welcomes the reform on plastics. “BSDA and its members welcome the launch of government’s 25 Year Environment Plan and its commitment to an evidence-based approach to establishing the best way to deal with plastic waste,” he said.

“The ambition is for all our packaging in the UK to be 100 percent recyclable, that consumers recycle and that drinks containers do not end up as litter in our towns, countryside, rivers and oceans.”

“China’s decision to ban plastic waste imports has further exposed the gaps in the UK’s recycling infrastructure and emphasized the need for a reform of the current compliance system.

“We believe that by working together with governments, NGO’s and other stakeholders real progress can be achieved to make the UK the world leader in creating a truly circular economy.”
The ban on plastic microbeads that are used in personal care products and cosmetics also came into force in the UK.

Related Articles

Food Ingredients News

Stable Micro Systems expands analysis capabilities with new density measurement tool

24 Jan 2018 --- Texture analysis experts, Stable Micro Systems, has developed the ideal solution for food manufacturers looking to quickly and accurately measure the density of their products. This gives users an insight into the structure and quality of foods like bread or aerated confectionery, and can give a good representation of mouthfeel – all of which can be used to inform future formulations, processing parameters and storage conditions.  

Food Ingredients News

The first year (Part 1): Trump and food-related policies

23 Jan 2018 --- The question echoes around the world and everyone has an opinion on it. What have we learned about President Donald Trump in the last 365 days? In a year like no other, in terms of US politics and culture at least, FoodIngredientsFirst examines how the billionaire businessman turned US President and his Republican administration has impacted food, agriculture and trade policies in the US and beyond over the course of the last 12 months.

Food Ingredients News

Bell Flavors highlights botanical extracts as a key theme for 2018

22 Jan 2018 --- The rapid shift towards more natural and organic products is expected to drive the global level market growth of botanical extracts, according to Bell Flavors and Fragrances. The usage of botanical extracts in food and beverage products offers great taste as well as natural flavor, together with enhanced organoleptic characteristics and improved nutritional value – underlining its growing presence in the market.

Food Ingredients News

Could there be relaxed rules for gene-editing?

22 Jan 2018 --- The European Court of Justice (ECJ) has given the first indication of how it will classify foods and crops derived from new genetic engineering techniques which should largely be exempt from EU laws. However, individual countries can step in to regulate them if they wish.

Food Ingredients News

Coca-Cola outlines mission to reduce plastic waste

22 Jan 2018 --- Coca-Cola has pledged to recycle a used bottle or can for every one the company sells by 2030 as well as working towards making all its packaging recyclable, as the soft drinks giant joins a global movement to reduce waste.

More Articles