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[The epidemic has changed people's perception of disposable plastic products]
Release date:[2020/6/28] Is reading[25]次

Many countries in the world are working to eliminate plastic straws and stir bars in the waste stream, including through regulations and bans. The performance of plastic retail bags is also not very good, and the ban on plastic bags is emerging all over the world. According to a new research report by Freedonia Group, plastics are expected to lose their share of the global food service disposable products market by 2024 and switch to using paper and other more environmentally friendly materials. Boosted by the suspension of the epidemic-related ban, which changed earlier this year, the cause of the epidemic even led to the suspension of the supervision of disposable plastics in the strictly regulated markets including California and the United Kingdom. The report said: "This will provide a short-term impetus for the global disposable food service product market. In 2019, the global disposable food service product market will total US$58 billion."

The report pointed out that although people are gradually moving away from plastics, the epidemic has changed people's perception of disposable plastic products. People think that disposable plastic products are more hygienic than reusable products. Even if the restaurant reopens, many people choose to use disposable cups, cutlery and plates instead of reusable cutlery for guests to dine.

But despite all the efforts in banning plastic straws and beverage stir bars, how big are their problems in the environment? In a study released by IDTechEx on June 18th, among the 10 disposable plastics found on European beaches, plastic straws and stirring rods ranked 10th, accounting for 0.57% of all plastic products.

The 9th place (2.01%) is for cups and lids; the tableware is ranked 8th (4.24%); plastic bags account for 7.01% of the plastic items found. The wipes ranked seventh (8.18%).

People may think that beverage bottles (including bottle caps) will account for the largest share, but in fact they only account for 8.78%. Cotton swabs, widely banned in Europe, ranked fourth with 13.70%.

Among the plastic items found on the beach, the third place is food containers, including fast food packaging, accounting for 14.14%. Bottles (including bottle caps) ranked second (19.31%).

The number one plastic item is actually a cigarette butt. People may question whether it should be considered plastic, but in fact the filter is made of plastic fibers. Of the plastic items found on European beaches, 22.05% of cigarette butts were thrown away.

In the 2018 International Coastal Cleanup Report of the Marine Conservation Organization, cigarette butts are also the number one item, with 2,412,151 cigarette butts found on beaches worldwide. The straw and stir bar are ranked 7th (643562). The US Coast Clearing Agency also found that cigarette butts are the most prolific items on the country’s beaches, at 842,937. Straws and stir bars on the US coast ranked sixth, with a total of 144,464 found.

Although plastic straws and stir bars have caused such a stir, these things are actually low on the list of plastic garbage found on the beach. Even plastic cutlery is not as serious as some people think.

According to the latest report from Freedonia Group, catering supplies including tableware and straws will not disappear soon, not just because of the epidemic. "The global demand for catering disposable items will be supported by a surge in delivery and take-out orders, which requires a large number of use of a series of disposable items," the study said, "this trend is very likely to continue after the epidemic, because Online food delivery is already a fast-growing trend, and many consumers will continue to maintain social distance even after lifting the blockade."

Source: China Plastic Online

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