By Daniel Warn
Nisqually Valley News 

Businesses Consider a Pivot to Compostable Utensils in Wake of New Law


Last updated 3/16/2022 at 11:25am

File Photo

Francisco Arias, a cook at Pizzeria La Gitana of Yelm, prepares food in this file photo.

Businesses in Yelm are considering the use of compostable plastic utensils in the wake of a new law that restricts the availability of disposal items.

The Washington Legislature passed a law last year that restricted the use of plastic utensils supplied by restaurants, which went into effect on Jan. 1.

The law states business owners, including those in meal delivery services, cannot include plastic utensils such as spoons, knives and forks in their meal offerings unless a customer specifically asks for them.

The automatic provision of cold-cup lids and packaging for condiments are also restricted in the law, as well as the bundling of multiple types of utensils together. Customers will have to ask for each utensil individually.

While some businesses could set up self-serve utensil stations, others could opt to wait until a customer asks directly for any given utensil.

The latter of the two options could be the more cost-effective option for local businesses who plan to take the restriction one step further and only offer compostable plastic utensils upon request.

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