Warm Up

Helpful Words and Phrases

Listen and repeat.

  1. cutlery
    • ex. We received cutlery made of silver as a wedding gift.
  2. a takeaway
    • ex. We often get takeaways from the Chinese restaurant down the street for family dinners.
  3. implement
    • ex. The company implemented a new policy last month.
    • ex. The teacher gave the students a grace period to finish their homework.
    • ex. It is important to comply with traffic rules to ensure road safety.


Read the article below and answer your tutor's questions.

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In Hong Kong, restaurants can no longer use single-use cutlery, such as plastic forks, spoons, straws, and plates, for both dine-in and takeaway orders. This is according to the new law implemented in April. The law aims to reduce plastic waste and pollution in the country. Restaurants were given a six-month grace period to comply. They can still use plastic containers and cups for takeaways for now. But a ban on all single-use plastics is expected next year.

Some restaurant owners think that the changes are not good for the food industry. Owner Kitty Chan said that switching plastic spoons to paper spoons costs twice as much. Meanwhile, customers are not sure about the law. Some think it’s inconvenient to bring their own containers and cutlery when they eat out. But others also recognize the effects of single-use containers on the environment.

Many businesses choose to use single-use eco-friendly plastics to comply with the new law. However, this still doesn’t solve Hong Kong’s plastic waste and pollution problem. Advocates hope the law will promote reusable materials, instead of simply replacing them with “eco-friendly” single-use ones.

This material was based on an article by The Associated Press.


Choose a topic and discuss the questions with your tutor.

Hong Kong’s New Law

  • Hong Kong implemented a new law that doesn’t allow single-use cutlery in restaurants. What do you think of this law (ex. it’s necessary, it’s not enough)? Discuss.
  • In your opinion, should this law be implemented in your country as well? Why or why not? Discuss.
  • How do you think consumers can help with the issues of plastic waste and pollution (ex. ask the restaurants not to provide cutlery, use reusable shopping bags)? Discuss.

Single-use Plastics

  • Why do you think restaurants and other businesses started using single-use plastics (ex. because they are convenient, because they are cheap)? Discuss.
  • Which do you prefer, eco-friendly single-use plastics or reusable items? Discuss.
  • Imagine you are going to eat out. What would you do to avoid using single-use items (ex. bring reusable cutlery)? Discuss.