The National Retail Association’s Policy team actively works across multiple sustainability and environmental regulations impacting retailers and their supply chains.


Plastic bans across AU/NZ

2023 BANS

ACT Stage 3 (commencing 1 July 2023):

    • ACT has passed their Stage 3 regulations.
    • Government factsheet now available >
    • Banned from 1 July 2023:
      • single-use plastic plates and unlidded bowls, excluding plastic-lined paper plates/bowls until Nov 2024
      • loose-fill EPS packaging
      • EPS trays
      • Microbeads
    • Banned from 1 January 2024:
      • All plastic shopping bags, including plastic-coated/lined paper bags
      • Non-woven polypropylene bags must be 90gsm in weight and have stitched seams.
    • ONLINE SESSION 23 JUNE. Register here >

New Zealand (commencing 1 July 2023):

    • NZ is phasing out more plastic items on 1 July 2023, including plastic produce bags, straws, cutlery, plates, bowls, and produce labels. Some exemptions/ conditions apply.
    • Additional online session: 22 June 11am AEST (1pm NZT). Register here >

QLD Stage 2 (commencing 1 Sept 2023):

    • QLD will be implementing further bans and initiatives over the next 5 years.
    • Regulations are still being finalised, but National Retail Association is confident the 1 Sept 2023 ban will include:
      • Plastic shopping bags which do not meet 2 new requirements (min. 80% recycled content AND carry 10kg for 125 uses as verified by reusability tests)
      • Loose-fill EPS packaging
      • Cotton buds with plastic stems
      • Microbeads
      • Balloon releases
    • ONLINE SESSION 23 JUNE. Register here >
    • More information, factsheets and online sessions will be available soon. Check here regularly:

WA Stage 2 (commencing 1 Sept 2023):

    • The WA Stage 2 ban will come into effect over 4 phases, commencing 1 September this year.
    • Government factsheets on all 4 phases of the Stage 2 ban are available here >
    • Banned from 1 Sept 2023:
      • Degradable plastic (incl. oxo-degradable and landfill degradable)
      • Cotton buds with plastic shafts
      • Microbeads
      • EPS cups and EPS in food and beverage packaging (including meat trays)
      • Loose fill EPS packaging (including other expanded plastic equivalents eg. EPE, EPP and foamed bioplastic)
    • More detailed guidance for business expected soon. Check here regularly:
    • ONLINE SESSION 22 JUNE. Register here >

SA Stage 3 (commencing 1 Sept 2023):

    • The SA Government plans to introduce further bans in 2023, 2024 and 2025.
    • Banned from 1 Sept 2023 (final regulations pending):
      • plastic pizza savers
      • plastic-stemmed cotton buds, with exemptions for medical, scientific, law enforcement or forensic purposes, eg. first aid and testing kits
      • single-use plastic plates and single-use plastic bowls designed not to have a lid and used for the consumption of food, with exemptions for plastic-lined paper plates/bowls until Nov 2024 and for plastic single-use bowls used for medical, scientific, law enforcement or forensic purposes.
    • Final regulations are expected to pass soon.
    • For more information: Visit or contact the Green Industries government team.

For more information across all current and upcoming bans:


UPDATE: National Environment Ministers Meeting

    • Last Friday, the national meeting of environment ministers (EMM) all state, territory and federal environment ministers committed to setting national, regulated standards for packaging.
    • The National Retail Association welcomes national unification and increased certainty, and looks forward to more details on scope and timing.
    • Read Minister Plibersek’s media statement >
    • Read National Retail Association’s statement >


INFO SESSIONS: Australasian Recycling Label

  • This year, a new packaging platform – the ARL Marketplace – will be launched: 
  • The purpose of the ARL Marketplace is to provide a simple sourcing solution that connects businesses with packaging formats that are ready to label with the Australasian Recycling Label (ARL).
  • We are running free weekly info sessions to help small and medium businesses to get the ARL on their packaging to help consumers recycle better. The sessions provide a brief overview of the ARL program, how the ARL benefits businesses and consumers, discuss the process, barriers, and address any questions they may have.
    Register here > or contact us.



  • APCO and the Australian Department of Climate Change, Energy, the Environment and Water (DCCEEW) are currently scoping a project to deliver a pilot study and research paper that identifies the presence of per and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in a range of food contact plastic packaging, and potential implications for recycling/recovery streams.
  • APCO is seeking interest from businesses that use/sell/make/import plastic food packaging. Polymers/formats of interest include: PET (bottles, jars, tubs, trays, punnets etc.); HDPE (bottles, jars, tubs, trays, pouches, tubes etc.; LDPE (bags, pouches, bottles, wrap); PP (bags, pouches, bottles, tubs, trays, punnets, wrap); Hot cups (polymer-coated paperboard or certified compostable).
  • If you are interested in participating, please submit an expression of interest by Saturday 17 June 2023

Check our Eventbrite regularly for new information sessions:

Contact the National Retail Association’s Policy team: