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French ban on plastic packaging and stickers around fruits and vegetables now in effect

French ban on plastic packaging and stickers around fruits and vegetables now in effect
Source: Unsplash Alexander Schimmeck

Under a series of new regulations in France, there can no longer be plastic packaging around fruits and vegetables—and car advertisements must promote walking and cycling instead of driving—as French consumers are encouraged to adopt more environmentally friendly habits.

French ban on plastic packaging for fruit and vegetables in force.

A new law banning plastic packaging on most fruit and vegetables came into effect in France on New Year’s day. Cucumbers, lemons and oranges are among the 30 varieties banned from being wrapped in plastic. However, larger packs as well as chopped or processed fruit will remain exempt. President Emmanuel Macron called the ban "a real revolution" and said it showed the country’s commitment to phase out single use plastics by 2040.

This exception is to be gradually banned in the coming years. Pictured: a perfectly functional plastic-free and harmlessly biodegradable alternative to berry packaging.
Plastic will still be allowed for more fragile fruits such as berries and peaches. This exception is to be gradually banned in the coming years. Pictured: a perfectly functional plastic-free and harmlessly biodegradable alternative to berry packaging. Source: Unsplash/veeterzy

France urges green habits with new car ads and bans on plastic

AP report the new measures promoted by President Emmanuel Macron’s government are intended to reduce pollution and the impact of cars on greenhouse gas emissions.

Beginning on New Year’s Day 2022, leeks and carrots, tomatoes and potatoes, apples and pears and about 30 other items can no longer be sold in plastic. Instead, they should be wrapped in other recyclable materials. Plastic will still be allowed for more fragile fruits such as berries and peaches, but is to be gradually banned in the coming years.

The government says the new regulation is expected to eliminate about 1 billion items of plastic waste per year.

Magazines and other publications will also need to be shipped without plastic wrapping, and fast-food restaurants will no longer be allowed to offer free plastic toys to children.

In the the coming year, French car ads will be required to include a message encouraging people to consider greener transportation. Starting from March, they will have to mention one of three messages: “For short trips, prefer walking or cycling,” “Think about carpooling” or “On a daily basis, take public transport.”

Source: AP

In 2021, France banned plastic straws, cups and cutlery, as well as polystyrene takeaway boxes. And later this year, public spaces will be forced to provide water fountains to reduce the use of plastic bottles.
Adieu plastic packs! In 2021, France banned plastic straws, cups and cutlery, as well as polystyrene takeaway boxes. And later this year, public spaces will be forced to provide water fountains to reduce the use of plastic bottles. Source: Unsplash/Elena Rabkina

Latest ban forms part of multi-year programme to slowly ease out plastics

President Emmanuel Macron has called the ban "a real revolution" and said it shows the country’s commitment to phase out single use plastics by 2040, as reported by the BBCGovernment officials believe that the ban could prevent a billion items of single use plastics being used every year.

In a statement announcing the new law, the Environment Ministry said that France uses an "outrageous amount" of single use plastics (more than a third of fruit and vegetable products in France are thought to be sold in plastic wrapping) and that the new ban "aims at cutting back the use of throwaway plastic and boost its substitution by other materials or reusable and recyclable packaging".

This latest ban forms part of a multi-year programme introduced by Mr Macron’s government that will see plastics slowly eased out in many industries.

From 2021, the country banned plastic straws, cups and cutlery, as well as polystyrene takeaway boxes. And later in 2022 public spaces will be forced to provide water fountains to reduce the use of plastic bottles, publications will have to be shipped without plastic wrapping, and fast-food restaurants will no longer be able offer free plastic toys.

Several other European countries have announced similar bans in recent months as they pursue commitments made at the recent COP26 conference in Glasgow.

Earlier this month Spain announced that it will introduce a ban on the sale of fruit and vegetables in plastic packaging from 2023 to allow business to find alternative solutions.

Mr Macron’s government also announced several other new environmental regulations, including rules calling on car adverts to promote greener alternatives such as walking and cycling.

Source: BBC

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