Latvia introduces partial ban on disposable plastics

  • 2021-05-27
  • LETA/TBT Staff

RIGA - Saeima passed the Law on Products Containing Plastic in the final reading today, which imposes a partial ban on disposable plastics.

The law bans certain plastic items on the market from July 3, as well as introduces measures to reduce their consumption.

Saeima Press Service informed LETA that the ban would not apply to plastic goods manufactured for medical devices, as well as to food packaging for dried food, packaging for raw meat, and primary packaging. The ban will also not apply to exports to third countries.

The purpose of the law is to prevent or reduce the impact of certain plastic products and fishing gear containing them on the environment, especially on water and human health, and to promote efficient functioning of the internal market, said the Environmental Protection and Regional Development Ministry, which drafted the new law.

The law stipulates that sales of several disposable plastic products will not be allowed in Latvia: cotton swabs, cutlery (forks, knives, spoons, chopsticks), plates, straws, beverage bags, as well as food and beverage packaging, corks and lids, glasses and their lids, disposable and reusable products made of polystyrene foam.

Manufacturers will have to offer non-plastic products to consumers or to sell reusable plastic items instead. Manufacturers of beverage packaging, in turn, will have to meet certain requirements regarding the amount of recycled plastic, including that such packaging will have to contain at least 30 percent of recycled plastic from January 1, 2030.