Environment Minister Steven Guilbeault’s department recommends Canadians eat with their hands to comply with a federal ban on single-use plastic forks. Food trucks should also ask customers to bring their own containers instead of using takeout polystyrene boxes, the department said..“Businesses should consider giving the customers the option to specify whether they require single use cutlery at all,” staff wrote in a report. “Businesses could also consider providing more meal options that do not require the use of cutlery, e.g. wraps and sandwiches.”.According to Blacklock's Reporter, federal enforcement of the regulations are scheduled by 2024. The rules ban six everyday plastic products: single-use cutlery, stir sticks, straws, polystyrene food containers, six-pack rings, and checkout bags..Plastic stir sticks required no replacement, wrote staff. “In some cases the need for stir sticks can be eliminated by redesigning how beverages are served,” said the report. “For example, some drinks can be pre-mixed and stirred before reaching the customer.”.A majority of Canadians do not need plastic straws, wrote staff. “Most customers do not require a straw to consume a beverage while seated at a table,” said the guide. “Furthermore, some companies have designed lids that make it easier to consume a beverage without a straw.”.On polyester food containers, diners and food trucks should be “encouraging customers to bring their own containers or developing a deposit and refund system.” On six-pack rings, retailers should use cardboard boxes or “adhesives that hold beverage containers together.”.The Department of Environment said plastic checkout bags were easily replaced though shoppers use about 15.6 billion of them each year, by official estimate. “Alternatives to single-use plastic checkout bags have become commonplace in Canada,” said the guide..The plastics ban will cost $204 million in its first year. “These costs are significant,” the environment department wrote in a 2021 Regulatory Impact Analysis Statement. “These substitutes would replace around 30 billion single-use plastic items annually or around 800 single-use plastic items per Canadian.”.Plastic forks manufactured at 4¢ apiece could be replaced with wooden cutlery at 9¢. Penny straws may be substituted with paper straws worth 3¢ apiece. Plastic six-pack rings worth 3¢ each would be replaced with cardboard alternatives at 34¢. Plastic checkout bags that cost 3¢ apiece could be replaced by 8¢ paper bags, said Impact Analysis.