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Symphony Env'l: Consumers want eco-friendly bags

England will introduce a 5p plastic bag levy on Monday

Symphony Environmental says consumers want eco-friendly plastic bags
85% of UK consumers wanted all plastic bags to be both biodegradable and recyclable.

Smart plastics group Symphony Environmental  Technologies (LON:SYM) is stepping up its efforts to have bio-degradable plastic bags made the standard in the UK.

England is due to introduce a 5p plastic bag levy on 5 October, to follow similar levies in Ireland, Wales and Scotland, but in many countries the use of eco-friendly plastics of the type produced by Symphony is mandatory.

The English used anything between 7.6 and 8.6bn plastic bags in 2014 depending on which statistics you use, all of which take 1,000 years to degrade.

The new levy is not universal. Onnly shops with more than 250 full-time staff have to charge it and it applies to a certain size.

Symphony Environmental has already called for eco-friendly bags to be exempt from the 5p tax and a survey it had commissioned in July indicated 85% of UK consumers wanted all plastic bags to be both biodegradable and recyclable. 

Similar results were shown by a recent survey in Mexico.

Furthermore, more than 60% of those surveyed in both countries believed that if the plastic bags are both biodegradable and recyclable they should be provided by supermarkets free of charge. 

Symphony added it had also broadened its anti-microbial product range with new rodent, insect and odour masking products.

Anti-microbial and anti-fungal applications are increasingly important as food preservatives and to protect plastic packaging for raw poultry against dangerous organisms like E-coli campylobacter and Salmonella, Symphony said. 

Michael Laurier, chief executive, said: "With the expanded product portfolio and favourable legislative environment, I am confident that Symphony will have many exciting opportunities ahead."    

Quick facts: Symphony Environmental Technologies PLC

Price: 23.4 GBX

Market: AIM
Market Cap: £41.36 m

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