News

Toronto’s in-store packaging proposals bad for consumers: CPIA

The Canadian Plastics Industry Association (CPIA) has taken issue with a range of in-store packaging initiatives cu...


Print this page

November 17, 2008 by Canadian Plastics

The Canadian Plastics Industry Association (CPIA) has taken issue with a range of in-store packaging initiatives currently being considered by the City of Toronto, arguing that they will drive up the cost of food, disadvantage community businesses and kill local jobs.

More information about the city’s packaging proposal can be found here. According to the CPIA, the proposals will cost retailers more than $300 million a year, and costs will be passed on to the consumer.

“This is Toronto at its anti-business best,” said the Canadian Taxpayers Federation’s Kevin Gaudet in a press release. “If the city goes ahead with these intrusive initiatives, there will be disinvestment and job losses in neighbourhoods across Toronto.”

According to Cathy Cirko, vice president of the Environment and Plastics Industry Council (EPIC), the city’s report is silent on the economic impacts of these measures.

“It doesn’t talk about the costs to consumers and businesses,” she said. “And it avoids identifying what bans and incentives on different plastic food packaging will really cost consumers. But we expect that there will be a lot of noise once small businesses and residents understand what’s in store for them.”

Both Gaudet and Cirko argue that the proposal amounts to an indirect tax, and Cirko said there are better ways to achieve the 0.5 per cent waste diversion target than punishing consumers and businesses.

“The better way is recycling,” she argued. “All the city has to do is put in the required sorting equipment and expand the blue bin program, and every bit of this material could be recycled and re-manufactured, creating green jobs right here in the province.”