SEOUL, Aug. 3 (Korea Bizwire) — With the Seoul Metropolitan Government beginning a crackdown on the use of disposable cups at coffee shops in the city, there were still a few outlets that offered plastic cups to their customers, although an official inspection by the city government concluded otherwise.
When six coffee shops in Jongno-gu were selected at random, it was rare to find an outlet in which all of the customers were enjoying their drinks in glasses or mugs. Most of the stores had a mix of both mugs and plastic cups.
Although cafe employees ask customers if it is okay for their drink to be served in a mug, the employees cannot stop customers from asking for their drinks in a disposable cup.
One customer asked if she could get her drink in a disposable cup while she sits in the cafe “for just a moment.”
There were yet other customers who left the premises unable to finish their drinks served in mugs.
One employee at a major coffee chain says she asks customers not to use disposable cups within the stores. “If you do not use mugs, the store will be fined,” she tells her customers.
During an official inspection of a coffee shop carried out by Jongno-gu Office in which members of the press were invited to tag along, all of the customers on premises were using mugs.
The inspection team checked the outlet for the number of mugs, glass cups and seats before looking through the list of recycled goods that were collected.
The outlet had around 70 seats and was using 100 to 120 mugs and glass cups, all of which were okayed by the inspection team.
The team checked to see if promotional materials denoting the ban on disposable cups were being displayed properly before taking some pictures to end the inspection.
The inspection team took approximately 10 minutes to carry out the check.
An official at Jongno-gu Office said that 10 district office employees were divided into five teams to review all of the coffee shops in the district.
The inspection team asks coffee drinkers whether they asked for a disposable cup or whether cafe employees gave it to them without asking, with the latter case resulting in a fine.
In Jongno-gu, not a single coffee outlet was fined yesterday, the first day of the crackdown to check for disposable cups in use at cafes.
Ashley Song (firstname.lastname@example.org)