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"Supply chain disruption may make sourcing alternatives to single-use plastics challenging"

UK plastic ban on straws, stirrers and cotton buds has been postponed for 6-months due to the coronavirus pandemic

The UK Government has postponed the ban on plastic straws, stirrers and cotton buds for 6 months due to the coronavirus outbreak.

The ban which was due to come in force in April has now been delayed until October 2020. This is in addition to the relaxed measures on the 5p plastic bag carrier charge in order to aid online deliveries.

DEFRA said, “Ministers have decided to delay the ban due to the impact on businesses from the current coronavirus pandemic to avoid additional burdens for firms at this challenging time. Many of the businesses which would be affected by the ban, such as, pubs, restaurants and cafes, are currently closed because of social distancing rules.”

“The government is still committed to its ambition of eliminating all avoidable plastic waste over the lifetime of the 25 Year Environment Plan.”


A DEFRA spokesperson said “We remain absolutely committed to turning the tide on the widespread use of single-use plastic and the threat they pose to our natural environment.”

“This ban is yet another measure to clamp down on unnecessary plastic so we can better protect our precious wildlife and leave our environment in a better state for future generations.”

Building on commitments made in the Resources and Waste Strategy, the Environment Bill looks to introduce new powers to tackle single-use plastic items including; imposing charges on single-use plastic items; ensuring producers cover the full net cost of collecting and managing waste including plastics; implementing a deposit return scheme for drinks containers; and introducing more consistent recycling services for households and businesses across England.

Plastic straws, stirrers and cottons buds are not accepted for recycling in Greater Manchester and cause a threat to our wildlife.

Help to stamp out avoidable single-use plastics in our city-region. By following a few simply steps we can make a difference in Greater Manchester and protect our environment for the future. Take a look at our Make a Change page for further information and look out for our step by step guide to reducing plastic waste COMING SOON.

  • The Manchester bee paper straw and sip straw are offered at a specially discounted price for hospitality operators from local catering supplier Stephensons:
  • For further information from DEFRA on the current delay to the ban on plastic straws, stirrers and cotton buds, visit:

    On this site you’ll find lots of information, advice and guidance to help you reduce the amount of single-use plastics you use. We want to help you make the right choices – whether that’s choosing to remove some products (always the best option), choosing a re-usable alternative (next best option) or switching to easily recyclable items.

    The first step is to sign our pledge and commit to take action to reduce avoidable single-use plastics across Greater Manchester. By making a commitment today you can help to make Greater Manchester one of the greenest UK city regions. We are always adding new content to our site so keep checking back for further information.  

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