McDonald’s and Starbucks hit by plastic ban in India’s Maharashtra state


Are you eating plastic?

McDonald’s and Starbucks have been caught in a crackdown on plastics in India.

The restaurant chains had been amongst dozens of firms hit with fines in Maharashtra state — India’s second-largest with a inhabitants of greater than 100 million — on the weekend, a authorities official stated.

The ban on single-use plastic objects together with purchasing baggage, meals containers and cutlery, was introduced in late March however went into drive on Saturday.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi referred to as plastic a “menace to humanity” in a speech earlier this month. His authorities has pledged to eradicate single-use plastic in India by 2022, becoming a member of a worldwide marketing campaign that has been given added urgency by analysis displaying there might be extra plastic by weight than fish within the oceans by 2050.

Related: How big brands are trying to pull off a recycling revolution

No less than 25 of India’s 29 states have full or partial bans on single-use plastics, however they’re usually not strictly enforced.

Maharashtra is cracking down instantly, forcing firms to alter their methods.

Hardcastle Eating places, the franchisee which runs McDonald’s (MCD) retailers in Maharashtra, stated it has begun utilizing picket cutlery, paper cups and straws fabricated from corn starch.

However the chain was fined as a result of it has not but discovered comparable alternate options for supply objects comparable to plastic lids for drinks, a spokesperson for McDonald’s India informed CNNMoney. McDonald’s has joined restaurant associations within the area in asking for exemptions from the ban for supply and takeaway orders, the spokesperson added.

Starbucks (SBUX) India didn’t reply to a request for remark.

Related: McDonald’s to scrap plastic straws in UK and Ireland

Fines for breaking the ban are small for world firms. They begin at 5,000 rupees ($73) for first time offenders, rising to 25,000 rupees ($367) for subsequent violations. Serial offenders might face jail time.

However the ban poses a a lot larger problem for smaller companies and retailers. Business associations have warned of dire penalties, beginning with the plastics business.

india mcdonalds trash

Neemit Punamiya, secretary of the Plastic Baggage Producers Affiliation of India, estimates that India’s plastic business might lose over $2.2 billion and 300,000 jobs because of the ban, local media reported.

Hipen Bheda, president of the All India Plastics Producers’ Affiliation, stated the ban in its present type was unclear and so extensively drawn that it might hurt the financial system.

“The choice needs to be to hunt options to the air pollution or the littering and never on killing the business,” he informed CNN, including that the business was eager to work with authorities to enhance waste administration.

Related: Big businesses are saying no to plastic trash in the UK

Thus far the federal government of Maharashtra has solely exempted plastic containers used to bundle medicines, milk and strong waste, in addition to plastic objects for export.

Authorities in Mumbai, India’s monetary hub and the capital of Maharashtra state, collected fines value 400,000 rupees ($5,900) on Sunday from greater than 80 institutions, a senior official informed CNNMoney. Officers in Pune, one other of the state’s main cities, reportedly collected a similar amount.

India’s marketing campaign to chop again on plastic utilization follows comparable strikes within the European Union and the United Kingdom.

Large world firms are additionally doing their half, with Swedish furnishings big IKEA imposing a ban on single-use plastic earlier this month.

— Vinayak Dewan and Sreoshi Mukherjee contributed to this text.

CNNMoney (New Delhi) First revealed June 25, 2018: 11:10 AM ET

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