EPA Seeking to Reduce Disposable Cup Usage 明年7月後禁保麗龍杯 自備杯子至少省5元

A ban on Styrofoam cups will take effect in July 2022 as an effort to reduce the use of disposable cups, Meanwhile, there will be a mandatory price difference of at least NT$ 5 between drinks served in self-provided cups and non-self-provided cups.

Taiwan uses huge amounts of disposable cups. The Environmental Protection Administration has therefore announced new measures to curb the use of disposable cups. The first measure is a ban on Styrofoam cups starting in July 2022. The second measure is aimed at encouraging people to bring their own cups when purchasing beverages and requires a price difference of NT$5 between drinks served in self-provided cups and non-self-provided cups. The targets of the new measures include chain beverage stores, fast food restaurants, convenience stores, and supermarkets. These places must also charge for disposable cups.

Mr. Kao, Resident: “Drinks stay colder longer in flasks, so I think it's good. (Will the NT$5 be an inducement for you?) Yes, yes, a big one. It's better than before.”

Ms. Wang, Resident: “I think it will work better if the difference is NT$10. (So you'll continue your habit of bringing your own cup?) Yes. ”

Businesses say the NT$5 price difference is too much. Some said they don't have plans to increase the price of drinks, and they will respond to the new measures during the advance notice period.

Lu Mou-yuan, Director, Ching Shin Fu Chuan Tea Station: “The pressure on us inexpensive beverage businesses will be huge if such as a proportionally big discount is going to make all at once. We don't have any plans at the moment to raise prices.”

Only chain beverage stores, fast food restaurants, convenience stores, and supermarkets will be required to enact this price difference. Environmental group Taiwan Watch said excluding non-chain businesses will dampen the effects of the policy. The EPA said it will start from these chain businesses, and it believes there will be results.

Wei Wen-i, Dep. Secretary, Recycling Fund Mgmt. Board, EPA: “They should account for more than 50 percent of usage, and they use hundreds of millions. We think we can start from this point, and these measures may spur non-chain businesses to do the same.”

The EPA's draft bill also calls for at least five percent of the cups used at chain convenience stores and fast food restaurants to be reusable cups starting on Jan. 1, 2023. They must also reduce their annual disposable plastic cup usage by 15 percent. A progressive reduction will be promoted through policy controls.