LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) – The city of Little Rock is taking an initiative to get more restarts to start using biodegradable products to reduce waste in landfills.
Faith Mullins and Robyn Madden are both a part of Plastic Free Little Rock. The group is working to get more restaurants to limit the use of single-use plastic.
"Plastic is bad for the environment, regardless of where it goes,” Mullins said. "It's better to use compostable and biodegradable material.”
Restaurants like Fassler Hall and Boulevard Bread have switched over to products like paper straws and biodegradable to-go containers. But Mullins said there is still a lot more that can get on board.
"We have over a dozen restaurant owners and managers that want to participate,” she said. "There are over one-thousand businesses that fit into the food service category here in Little Rock."
Madden said some owners fear switching over to biodegradable products will be expensive.
"Sometimes a compostable product is going to cost a little more, but I don't think its cost prohibitive,” Madden said.
That is where Plastic Free Little Rock is working to help restaurants offset the costs. Madden said a biodegradable to-go container can cost a quarter more than a plastic one.
"I have heard about a couple restaurants in Little Rock that use compostable products and they charge a 25 cent to go fee,” Madden said.
Mullins said switching over to biodegradable products is a start because plastic has become a huge problem in today’s society.
"Compostable materials might be increasing the volumes in the landfill, but they are still going to biodegrade eventually,” she said. “We don’t right now see the costs of dealing with the trash and plastic waste we produce, but it is really expensive and there are all of these environmental and health costs associated with that.”
Plastic Free Little Rock will be meeting with restaurant owners who want to make the switch over to biodegradable products. That will take place on Tuesday, April 2 at the Public Works Building in downtown Little Rock.
If you are a restaurant and want to get on board you can email them at email@example.com.