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Reusable obligation: Coffee-to-go should finally become sustainable


The Bundestag has passed a new reusable obligation for restaurateurs. The bottle deposit will also be expanded and will apply to all types of beverages in the future. However, environmentalists criticize the generous exceptions.

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Protest against disposable coffee cups on Pariser Platz in Berlin

Photo: Paul Zinken / dpa

From 2023 onwards, restaurants, snack bars and cafés will have to offer their customers a reusable option in addition to disposable packaging.

The Bundestag has decided on a corresponding obligation.

Exceptions apply, however, to smaller catering establishments that are no more than 80 square meters in size and have no more than five employees.

At the same time, the MPs extended the deposit requirement to all single-use plastic bottles and beverage cans.

So far, there are still beverages - such as non-carbonated fruit juices - whose packaging is not subject to a deposit.

Such exemptions will no longer apply from 2022;

There is only a transition period until 2024 for milk and milk products. In addition, a minimum proportion of recycled plastic will be introduced for the production of PET bottles.

These measures are intended to reduce packaging waste in Germany.

"With more reusable packaging, we will effectively curb the flood of packaging, especially in the to-go area," said Environment Minister Svenja Schulze (SPD).

For environmentalists, however, the new regulations do not go far enough.

Above all, the exceptions to the reusable obligation are criticized.

The German Hotel and Restaurant Association, on the other hand, fears an additional financial burden, while the HDE trade association is calling for at least longer transition periods.

From the point of view of the German city cleaners, however, the law provides important impetus for a more sustainable handling of packaging waste.

Municipal cleaning companies in particular are suffering from the to-go boom, according to the Association of Municipal Companies.

The removal of the waste from public spaces costs around 700 million euros per year.

sbo / dpa

Source: spiegel

All business articles on 2021-05-08

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