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Imperial Beach’s New Plastic Ban Goes Live

Katy Fallon shows off some of her new paper-based boxes and cups, Nov. 15, 2019.

Photo by Matt Hoffman

Above: Katy Fallon shows off some of her new paper-based boxes and cups, Nov. 15, 2019.

Say goodbye to single-use plastics in Imperial Beach. Starting Friday one of the state’s strictest plastic bans goes into effect.

That includes all nonbiodegradable or recyclable food containers, straws and utensils. Single-use plastic bags were already banned. Polystyrene products, commonly referred to as Styrofoam, are also part of the latest restrictions.

Cities throughout California have imposed plastic bag bans in recent years as awareness has grown regarding the harm plastic does to the environment. But few have gone as far as IB.

"I’m just embracing it," said Katy Fallon who owns Katy's Cafe in IB. "You know I want to do my part anyway — I was born and raised in Southern California I want to keep it as good as we can."

RELATED: Imperial Beach Passes One Of The Broadest Plastic Bans In State

Reported by Matt Hoffman , Video by Michael Damron

Fallon switched to paper straws a while back and, in the months leading up to the ban, she got paper cups, bags, and just got new paper to-go boxes. Fallon said switching to biodegradable products is more expensive, but it won’t break her business.

"It’s just something we have to adapt to," she said. "Nobody likes to be forced into a change."

Fallon said she has raised her prices a little, but every item on the menu is still under $10.

Katy’s Cafe still uses some one-time-use plastics such as, to-go utensils, but Fallon is working to change that and hopes others will too.

"I hope people can embrace it — the smaller businesses," Fallon said. "It is hard. It is hard just being in business but you’ve got to look at something else that you can save money on."


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Photo of Matt Hoffman

Matt Hoffman
General Assignment Reporter

opening quote marksclosing quote marksI am a general assignment reporter for KPBS. In addition to covering the latest news and issues that are relevant to the San Diego community, I like to dig deeper to find the voices and perspectives that other media often miss.

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