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Rethinking Plastic has launched a "Bad Five Free" campaign focusing on educating restaurants and restaurant-goers on the alternatives to single-use packaging and utensils. The focus is on items that Rethinking Plastic Sarasota calls "the bad five"—clamshell polystyrene takeout containers; plastic cups, lids and straws; plastic bottles; plastic bags; and plastic utensils. 

"As a community, we can begin to make an immediate and substantial impact on plastic pollution by refusing these single-use items, and begin to use alternatives and reusables," Rethinking Plastic Founders Cat Dillard and Jana Hoefling said in a release.

Rethinking Plastic's "Bad Five Free" campaign volunteers are available to  work with local restaurants by providing education and alternative resources in order to reduce single-use plastic waste. Restaurants can request assistance by sending an email to info@rethinkingplastic.org; those that have already committed to reducing single-use plastics in their businesses can sign a pledge on rethinkingplastic.org.

A kickoff event will be held on Tuesday, Oct. 16, at Selby Library's auditorium from 6-7:15 p.m. For more information, click here

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