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Montreal to ban stores from dumping food and unsold clothes

The measures announced today are aimed at cutting waste at its source and reducing the amount that ends up in landfills.
The measures announced today are aimed at cutting waste at its source and reducing the amount that ends up in landfills. Getty Images

The City of Montreal will ban the dumping of food and unsold clothes as part of its five-year action plan to reduce waste.

The Plan directeur de gestion des matières résiduelles 2020-2025 will see the reduction of waste at the source, keep organic matter from ending up in landfills, and mobilize stakeholders.

Grocery chains, educational institutions and hospitals will be encouraged to donate food they consider to not be fresh enough and partner up with food banks.

Projet Montréal Coun. Laurence Lavigne Lalonde said Thursday it doesn’t make sense that perfectly consumable items end up in the trash when there are children and others going hungry.

READ MORE: Eco-conscious Montrealers flock to 2nd Zero Waste Festival in Old Montreal

Under the plan, food waste producers will also be encouraged to compost.

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Clothing stores and textile companies will be forbidden from throwing out unsold clothing.

Zero waste and Quebec: what can be done
Zero waste and Quebec: what can be done

Merchants will soon have to recycle clothing or work with different social groups to give clothes to people in need.

Lavigne Lalonde says there are no fines in place yet if merchants and stores don’t follow the action plan. The city wants to change people’s mentality when it comes to waste reduction, she added.

A public consultation will be held on the plan, but the city aims to divert up to 75 per cent of residual waste away from landfills by 2025.

With files from The Canadian Press