The National Retail Association today applauds New South Wales businesses for taking the single-use plastic ban in their stride.
From 1 November, the NSW Government is banning single-use items including:
- Plastic straws, stirrers, cutlery, plates, unlidded bowls, and cotton buds
- Food ware and cups made from expanded polystyrene
- Rinse-off personal care products containing plastic microbeads.
Since February, the National Retail Association (NRA) has on behalf of the NSW Government, been providing free education and support to more than 40,000 retailers, suppliers, and community organisations to implement the changes.
NRA Director of Policy, David Stout, said that the majority of businesses were supportive of the ban and were making changes to comply or go further than the ban.
“While it’s impossible to educate every single business personally, the NSW Government has rolled out one of the biggest support programs ever seen,” said Mr. Stout.
“We’ve physically visited over 13,000 stores in over 800 retail centres, precincts, and malls across the state.
“We also had great reception at community outreach events in 20 key food hubs some of which include, Parramatta, Haymarket, Wollongong, Port Macquarie and Ballina,” he said.
Educational material and in-person advice has also been provided in more than 15 different languages to support linguistically diverse business owners and communities.
In September, the NSW Government launched the ‘Stop it and Swap’ advertising campaign, while also engaging the NRA to roll out a Positive Change campaign online and in shopping centres.
“200 shopping centres have displayed campaign materials that are being seen by millions of shoppers and our digital campaign has reached over 10 million views.”
The NSW Government has also partnered with Great Plastic Rescue to collect excess stock for recycling and remanufacturing into new items.
As the ban comes into effect, the EPA has confirmed they will focus on an education and awareness first approach to support businesses to switch to more sustainable alternatives.
The NRA will continue to provide the toll-free hotline and weekly free information sessions every Friday at 10am AEDT to provide ongoing support.
David Stout is available for interview, contact the NRA media unit on 0467 792 013.