China to cut production of chopsticks in environment bid

Last Updated: Wed, Jun 23, 2010 13:40 hrs

China will limit production of disposable chopsticks in a bid to protect the environment, the government said. Currently, some 45 billion pairs of chopsticks, equivalent to 25 million fully grown trees, are produced annually, adversely impacting the environment.

Companies making disposable chopsticks will face government restrictions aimed at reducing its use, Xinhua reported quoting a joint circular issued here Wednesday.

The production, circulation and recycling of disposable chopsticks should be more strictly supervised, the circular issued by six ministries and government departments said.

Restaurants should use clean recyclable chopsticks instead of disposable ones, it said. There have been growing calls in recent years to stop the use of disposable chopsticks.

Though the government never released statistics on the use of disposable chopsticks, it is estimated that some 45 billion pairs of chopsticks are produced annually.

The latest call for reducing the use of disposable chopsticks is part of the government's energy-saving campaign.

The Chinese cabinet launched a campaign June 10, calling on the government agencies to save electricity, fuel and water to help the country meet its emissions targets.

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