Disposable chopsticks to be banned

Many Japanese restaurants and convenience stores still think it is a nice service to routinely give customers free chopsticks. Since these are disposable, they add to the garbage problem, not to mention the deforestation issue. Some are made of bamboo, which is better, but now old habits are beginning to change as the price increases. The Mainichi has the details:

A restriction that the Chinese government has placed on the production of disposable wooden chopsticks to protect forests is beginning to affect Japanese box lunch companies, restaurants and pubs, industry sources said.

In November last year, Chinese exporters notified Japanese buyers that they would raise the price of disposable chopsticks by 50 percent because of the rising cost of wood. However, Chinese products, which were 1 to 2 yen a pair, were still less expensive than their Japanese counterparts, which were priced at 2 to 20 yen.

The move was followed by the Chinese government's announcement in March that it would restrict the production of disposable chopsticks, and then totally ban them in order to protect domestic forests.


Pandabonium said…
This comment has been removed by the author.
Pandabonium said…
So here we are more than 3 years later and stores in Japan are still giving out wooden chopsticks. Guess we just found another country willing to cut down their forests for us.

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