UNION CITY — Plastic straws will no longer be welcome in Union City beginning next year.

The City Council voted unanimously Monday night to adopt an ordinance that bans single-use plastic straws at restaurants, cafes, tea shops and all other food businesses, in an effort to reduce litter in the city and cut down on plastics getting into waterways.

The council also voted to require that food businesses hand out “disposable food ware accessories” like utensils and condiment cups only when requested by customers or at self-serve stations.

The new rules will go into effect Jan. 1, 2020, but the city will allow for a “grace period” through July 1, 2020, to give businesses time to make the switch to compostable straws and to use up any single-use plastic ones they have left, city reports said.

About 200 businesses in the city are affected by the new rules, and city staff members are in the process of meeting with each business in person to discuss the changes, reports said.

The main concern business owners have about the change in rules is the increased cost to switch from single-use plastic to compostable fiber straws.

“Even with advancing technology, compostable straws typically cost more than plastic straws,” staff …read more

Source:: East Bay – Science


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