There will be a ban on plastic and styrofoam items starting January next year.
Speaking at a press conference at Jamaica House this morning (September 17), Minister without Portfolio in the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation, Daryl Vaz, announced that a ban will be imposed on plastic straws, styrofoam and single-use plastic carrier bags, otherwise known as “scandal bags”.
He says bags used to package items such as rice, baked goods and meat will not be affected by the ban.
He says the importation and manufacture of plastic straws will be banned as of January 2019, while plastic straws attached to juice boxes will be banned come January 2021.
The minister also said styrofoam importation will be banned as of January 2019, the use of styrofoam in the food and beverage industry will be banned as of January 2020, with the exemption of raw meat packaging.
He said distributors wishing to use styrofoam for raw meat packaging must apply to the National Environment and Planning Agency (NEPA) for approval.
The move is aimed at making the environment cleaner and safer.
The Minister is encouraging industries to manufacture and distribute paper based and other environmentally friendly alternatives.