Plastic Free Business scheme launched

A scheme that showcases businesses that are becoming plastic-free has been launched by the Isle of Man Government and beach cleaning charity Beach Buddies.

A scheme that showcases businesses that have taken action to become plastic free has been launched by the Isle of Man Government and beach cleaning charity Beach Buddies Isle of Man/

The Plastic Free Business scheme, will be run by Beach Buddies.

Businesses that join the scheme will be presented with certificates and window stickers to display and provided with support and advice in making practical changes.  

The stickers will make businesses easily identifiable to potential customers, allowing the public to make informed choices about the businesses they support.

This scheme forms part of the Single Use Plastic Reduction Plan for the Isle of Man Community and launches in celebration of the United Nations Decade of Ocean Science.

This Plastic Free Business scheme comes ahead of the proposed introduction of legislation that will ban the following single use plastic items:

‘Plates, plastic carrier bags, stirrers, straws (with necessary exceptions i.e. medical use), cutlery, polystyrene food containers for immediate use, polystyrene cups, plastic stemmed cotton buds, balloon sticks and Oxo-degradable plastics.’

The legislation would also ‘ban the manufacture, sale and distribution of rinse-off personal care products that contain plastic micro beads.’

The Plastic Free Business scheme aims to celebrate businesses that have removed those specific single use items, but also showcase organisations that have made efforts to further reduce other single use plastic items, such as removing sauce sachets, providing water bottle refills or buying concentrated versions of cleaning products to reduce packaging (see our tips for more examples).

Businesses can register as either:

‘Supporting’ by removing single use plastic plates, bags, stirrers, straws, cutlery, polystyrene food and beverage containers, plastic stemmed cotton buds, balloon sticks and oxo-degradable plastics 

or

‘Plastic-free’ by removing all unnecessary single use plastics from their day to day activities.

Geoffrey Boot MHK, Minister for Environment, Food and Agriculture, said: ‘This scheme will celebrate the businesses that are making huge strides to reduce plastic litter, and marine pollution in our Biosphere, and will hopefully encourage others to follow suit. We must now move away from single use fossil fuel based plastics, and this is a good step in that direction’

Bill Dale BEM, Founder of Beach Buddies said: 'Many cafes, bars and food outlets on the Island have already chosen to go plastic-free, but many have not, so a project like this makes a lot of sense and will hopefully encourage everyone to get involved. As a UNESCO Biosphere, we should be taking decisions like this and setting an example.'

To join the scheme, email beachbuddiesisleofman@gmail.com

GET INVOLVED

If you love the Isle of Man and want to help keep it special, there are a variety of ways to get involved in UNESCO Biosphere Isle of Man projects. Here are a few suggestions.

Please help us spread the word about Biosphere Isle of Man!