Swapping plastic for compostable alternatives is just as bad for the ...

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Swapping plastic food packaging or cutlery for compostable alternatives and paper is a 'false solution' which is just as bad for the environment, Greenpeace warns Swapping plastic for wood or paper uses up valuable trees and wood supplies Meanwhile compostable plastics have been found ending up in incinerators Greenpeace said shops should be opting for genuinely reusable products Metal cutlery, refillable bags and containers and unpackaged foods are the ideal 

By Sam Blanchard For Mailonline

Published: 14:22 BST, 1 October 2019 | Updated: 15:51 BST, 1 October 2019

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Replacing single-use plastics with compostable alternatives or paper or wood is not the answer to environmental problems, Greenpeace has warned.

Companies including Marks & Spencer, Pret A Manger and Sainsbury's have all launched initiatives to try and cut how much plastic they use.

But the campaign group branded these 'false solutions' and said it was 'grotesque' that using wood and paper wastes trees, while compostable materials often end up in general rubbish.

Instead, supermarkets and cafes should be trying to use fully reusable items like metal cutlery, refillable bags and unpackaged foods.

Greenpeace said companies introducing compostable plastic bags, such as the one pictured, from the Co-op, was as bad as carrying on with normal plastic bags because they so often end up in landfill or an incinerator

Greenpeace said companies introducing compostable plastic bags, such as the one pictured, from the Co-op, was as bad as carrying on with normal plastic bags because they so often end up in landfill or an incinerator

WHICH COMPANIES DID GREENPEACE CALL OUT FOR THEIR 'FALSE SOLUTIONS'? 
Aldi (Trial of paper and compostable plastic bags) Budgens (Beechwood netting, sugarcane, bamboo and coconut) Co-op (Focus on recycling plastic, paper swaps, and compostable bags) Costa Coffee (Focus on recycling while opposing a latte levy) Iceland (Lots of plastic swaps - paper, sugar beet, bagasse (from sugar cane) and bamboo) Kew Gardens (Compostable plastic vegware in cafes) Marks and Spencer (Swapping plastic for wooden cutlery) Morrisons (Swapping plastic bags for paper ones) McDonald’s (Swapping plastic straws for unrecyclable paper straws) Pret a Manger (Compostable plastic cutlery will be introduced to every UK shop in 2019) Sainsbury’s (Lightweighting plastic to make it thinner, without removing the plastic altogether) Waitrose (Compostable plastic veg bags) 

'Companies swapping single-use plastic for other throwaway items need to think again,' said Greenpeace's Fiona Nicholls.

'We can’t carry on using up land or chopping down forests to make cutlery, cups or packaging that gets used for a matter of moments, and could pollute our planet for hundreds of years to come. It’s grotesque.

'Businesses like supermarkets and cafes must switch to a reuse and refill

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