Invitation to become a Plastic Free Precinct

With the cooperation of participating retailers, businesses, councils and other organisations, Green Industries SA is seeking to pilot the establishment of plastic free precincts in metropolitan Adelaide with a particular (but not necessarily exclusive) focus on the hospitality, café, and food service sector. For the pilot program to be successful participants would replace a range of specified single-use plastic products with reusable, recyclable or compostable alternatives.

Why are we doing this?

On 13 January 2019, the Minister for Environment and Water, the Hon David Speirs MP released a discussion paper Turning the tide on single-use plastic products for six weeks of consultation which closed on 22 February 2019.  We sought feedback from the community and businesses on how we can better protect our natural resources and the environment from the impact of single-use plastic products. More than 3,500 plus submissions made it clear there’s considerable community and industry support for increasing measures to address a range of single-use plastic products and other items. The majority of respondents want government to take the lead. A summary of the public consultation is available here. Acknowledging the strong appetite for change in the community and the results from the broad consultation, the government plans to develop legislation that establishes a framework to phase-out single-use plastic products and other single-use items. The phase-out of a range of single-use plastic products will be piloted through voluntary business/retailer led ‘Plastic Free Precincts’. The Plastic Free Precinct pilots will identify opportunities and challenges associated with transitioning away from single-use plastic products and inform the legislation.

What is a precinct?

The focus of the pilot program will be on the hospitality, café, and food service sector. A precinct could be a local government area, a high concentration of traders within a hub like a marketplace, major retail centres like shopping centre complexes, proactive city/suburban street/block with a high density of traders, or even a series of sites linked by a common activity like sporting venues, entertainment venues, surf lifesaving venues or retail outlets.

How will the pilot program work?

We will engage an expert organisation to develop, implement and manage the plastic free pilot precinct program. This organisation will provide on-the-ground support for participating businesses and community sites to make the transition away from single-use plastics towards reusable, recyclable or compostable alternatives. As a minimum requirement, the precinct should focus on:

  • Plastic drinking straws
  • Single-use coffee cups
  • Plastic beverage containers
  • Plastic bags (all types)
  • Take-away plastic serving ware (cutlery etc)
  • Take-away polystyrene food packaging

A local coordinator will work closely with precinct partners such as council and trader associations to keep the program on track, provide advice and support for participants as required and report on progress and outcomes.  Ideally, the plastic free precinct should be self-sustaining beyond the duration of the pilot which should run for 12 months.

What are the opportunities for my business?

The pilot program is intended to answer that question, however through transitioning away from single-use plastic items and adopting new practices you will position your business in a way that offers promotional opportunities to your customers. Your participation will showcase your concern regarding single-use plastics and help to address the concerns of your community and government regarding these items. Working as a precinct will bring your trading community closer together with networking, communications and potential branding opportunities.

By participating in the program, you will have access to information and resources, including on-the-ground support to assist your business to transition away from single-use plastic items.

How do I register interest?

If you are a council, a trading group or association, a management authority or other entity with a high density of businesses in the hospitality, café, and food service sector that has a potential interest participating in this program. Register your interest here. Please submit your registration of interest by 26 July 2019. Registering an interest does not obligate you in any way. Nothing in this registration of interest, or your response should be construed as creating any binding contract or other legal relationship (express or implied) between you and Green Industries SA.

Further information:

Alana Potts, Green Industries SA

Related Publications

Single-use Plastics Consultation Summary Report (2019) Single-use Plastics Consultation Summary Report (2019) (3788 KB)

Single-use Plastics Discussion Paper (2019) Single-use Plastics Discussion Paper (2019) (7181 KB)

Single-use Plastics Summary Paper (2019) Single-use Plastics Summary Paper (2019) (3940 KB)

Turning the Tide on Single-use Plastics: NEXT STEPS (2019) Turning the Tide on Single-use Plastics: NEXT STEPS (2019) (6649 KB)