What Grade of Plastic Carrier Bags Allowed In UK

The use of plastic is banned by almost all of the governments in the whole world because of the negative side effects it contributes to humans, environment and wildlife. The manufacturing process causes pollution to the environment because of its harmful smoke. Many wildlife especially those that are found in aquatic places are in danger. To save the world from destruction, the use of plastics, if not banned, is minimized. Though banning the use of plastics is a worldwide act, still, it is not yet totally implemented. However, some plastics are allowed to use as these are very helpful storage of many things. 

The plastic bag ban forbids retailers from giving out single-use and lightweight polyethene plastic bags that are less than 35 microns. Most of the big supermarkets in the UK today offer facilities for carrier bag recycling. Degradable plastic bags are also banned because these are less than 35 microns in terms of thickness. These are still made of plastic, nonetheless contained additive that makes it easy to break apart compared to standard plastic bags. These bags also contribute harm to the environment and are different from biodegradable plastic carrier bags which are made from plant starch. 

What plastic items are banned in UK?

– Micro plastics

– PVC packaging

– Disposable plastic cutlery

– Cotton buds

– Disposable plastic plates and bowls

– Plastic hot drink stirrers

– Polystyrene packaging

– Plastic straws

Which carrier bags are allowed and safe to use?

  • Barrier Bags. These are dispensed from a roll. You can find it and it is made available when you are buying fish, meat, vegetables, and fruits. Fish, meat, vegetables and fruits are usually heavy and wet. Therefore, it needs storage that is sturdy and will not easily break. Barrier bags are just perfect for these items. 
  • Heavier Plastic Bags That Are Retail and Reusable. These are usually thick plastic and used by department stores and clothing stores. These are also being sold by many supermarkets nowadays. The great thing about these bags is that you can reuse it many times which keeps you from buying carrier bags again and again. You can take these bags with you whenever you go shopping. 
  • Reusable Bags. Green bags or cotton carrier bags that are also known as sturdy bags or woven cotton are also allowed and these bags are designed and created for multiple uses. Green bags are eco-friendly and help to reduce the use of plastic bags. It can be washed and used again and again. 
  • Compostable Bags. Compostable biodegradable bags are created from plant starch and not rom plastic and are also allowed to use. These bags are having a capability to decompose over time by the help of bacteria or other living organisms. One of the benefits of having the ability to compose is that it decreases greenhouse gas. It will assist the soil to absorb carbon. These bags are easy to find and easy to manage when thrown. 
  • Paper Bags. The great thing about paper bags is that it degrades easily. Therefore, its environmental problem effect is just less. Even though it is not that durable compared to plastics, the decomposition is a great advantage. Bags made from paper have a special purpose. It is easy to recycle and there is no need to wait for how many months or years. Its limitation is, it is not capable of heavy and wet items. You can’t put your meat, fish, vegetables or fruits because it will break and is not reliable for such items. Today, there are grocery stores that are using paper bags for their items. Their customers do not find it comfortable especially in bulk shopping. 

Which plastic that is safe to use as food packaging and storage?

When it comes to food handling, it is important to be careful because your health might be at risk. You can use any plastic bags for your clothes and other materials but when it comes to food, it’s another story. People nowadays are not so conscious when using plastics in storing foods which is very wrong. Using bags, containers, and jars that are made plastics for food storage usually is the cause of health problems. Some chemicals might transfer to foods especially when you have no idea which country these products came from and how these products were manufactured. 

Plastic bags are comfortable to use for food storage as it will not leak easily. However, there is a type of plastic bags that are allowed for food storage in the UK. Not all plastic bags are allowed because when food is put in plastic bags, there are tendencies that chemicals from the plastic bags will go into the food and infection is possible. Professionals encourage everyone to use high-grade self seal polyethene bags or brown paper bags to be safe. Strong food bags, minimum of 200g food-grade polythene must be used. Keep away from infection and bacteria by using the right bags for your food. Bags that are made from polyethene are not toxic but it is not yet proven its safety if used many times. 

Below plastics are very safe for food

– High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE) 

– Low-Density Polyethylene (LDPE)

– Polypropylene (PP)

– Polycarbonate (PC) 

– Polyethylene Terephthalate (PET) 

You can use any carrier bags. You can use it at home if you have it available. No one will check if the bag that you are using is prohibited or not when you are at home. However, with the knowledge that not all types of carrier bags are safe, it is now your choice. It is your choice if you will help save our environment, the people and animals or not. As you can see, not everyone has the heart to care – for oneself or others. However, it is still great to help and to care than not. 

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