Taiwan requires paper tableware to be recycled

Food vendors offering on-site dining have to make sure their paper tableware is recycled.

Recycling Taiwan paper paper packaging

In an effort to reduce waste Taiwan now has implemented a new regulation that requires food vendors offering on-site dining to set aside an area marked with Taiwan's logo for recyclable items for costumers to place their used paper tableware. Vendors also have to promote the measure to their costumers as well as make sure, the collected items are handed over to recyclers. 

Additionally the vendors are encouraged to use visual or audio tools to remind their diners to remove food waste from the paper before placing it in the recycling bin. 

Single-use (paper) tableware is widely used in Taiwan. During the pandemic its use continued to increase, according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The new regulation is only the next step of the EPA to reduce waste and to increase recycling rates. The EPA also launched trial runs of reusable container rental services. Moreover, to reduce the use of single-use tableware at source, people are also urged to practice the habit of carrying their own reusable utensils when eating out or ordering meals to go, the EPA says in a statement.

The next step may be to eventually ban single-use tableware and cutlery, as well as bottled water in meetings and events held by central and local governments or in government facilities, as well as on school campuses by the end of next year. With this project the EPA wants to set an example to encourage the private sector to adopt similar measures.