The National Trust has revealed that it will stop selling single-use plastics by 2022, following the action of eliminating plastic from its disposable cups and cutlery, opting for biodegradable products.
It will also withdraw throwaway plastic bottles from sale across its 343 cafés and tea rooms and will swap all single-use plastic bottles for glass bottles in all sit-down cafés by the end of 2018.
The Trust, which cares for 250,000 hectares of countryside, has said it is committed to ensuring all of its stores are free of single-use plastics by 2022 and will explore alternatives for single-use plastics in its plants sales areas.
Steps already taken by the charity to reduce and replace these plastics include:
- Replacing all disposable food and drink packaging with products that are fully biodegradable
- Launching a pilot scheme to make reusable and biodegradable hot drinks cups available at its cafés
- Providing free drinking water as standard at its cafés and tea rooms
- Removing single-use plastic bags from its shops and replacing them with paper
- Switching to reusable plant pots and trays in its plant shops.
National Trust head of environmental practices Lizzy Carlyle said: “As an organisation committed to creating and maintaining a healthy and more beautiful natural environment, we are committed to using every opportunity to minimise our use of non-renewable resources and cut down our waste. The impact single use plastics have on the natural world is particularly alarming.
“Our latest focus has been on how we can eliminate the use of single use plastic in our 343 cafés and tea rooms, whilst ensuring that any disposable packaging we do use has as little impact on the environment as possible.”