California may ban detachable caps on plastic bottles that could potentially set a bottling standard for the rest of the nation and the state also is looking at restricting plastic straws.
The plastic bottle cap legislation is designed to reduce litter and encourage that the caps get recycled but it would force beverage companies in California — the sixth-largest economy in the world — to switch to caps tethered to plastic bottles. That said, some bottled water companies such as Crystal Geyser have already started doing so and Nestle has it on sports caps for some of its Arrowhead bottled water.
Regardless, passage of Assembly Bill 2779 would force bottling companies to decide whether they want to have California-specific plastic bottles with tethered bottle caps or different bottles for other markets across the U.S. Given California is the nation's largest consumer market with more than 39 million people, there's a possibility beverage companies may decide to let California bottles become the industry standard.
"We're such a large market, which is why the beverage industry has been fighting us on this," said Assemblyman Mark Stone, who last month introduced the bill to force single-use plastic beverage container caps. "If we can accomplish this, it could change the landscape with respect to caps and bottles."