February 9, 2023

A city councilor proposed an ordinance mandating the enforcement of a “clean as you go” (Claygo) policy in establishments to promote discipline among the public.

The proposed ordinance filed by Councilor Elmer Datuin sought to mandate owners, proprietors, and managers of restaurants, fast food chains, cafeterias, eateries, bakeries, coffee shops, canteens, food outlets, and all similar food establishments and public eating places in the city to initiate and institutionalize measures to encourage their customers to practice Claygo.

“By practicing the ‘clean as you go’ policy, the same will demonstrate right manners and conduct through proper dining etiquette, hygiene, and the value of cleanliness by making it a habit of the people to take care of their litter and not just leave them where they ate,” Datuin said.

Under the proposal, the establishment will install signage and provide a minimum of three garbage bins for biodegradable, non-biodegradable, and recyclable materials under the city’s environment code passed in 2016 and the solid waste management ordinance of Baguio.

The proposal, however, exempts fine dining restaurants that provide fancier menus, elegant or formal atmosphere, and food handling services as an added premium to their customers or dinners.

Aside from the Claygo practice, the ordinance will also promote common courtesy among customers, as well as foster a collaborative effort between them and food establishment personnel.

Datuin noted how other countries have long been practicing “clean as you go” in all food establishments.

“This is not new. Other countries have been doing this. Even here in our city, some are already practicing it,” the councilor said.

He said in canteens where the management could control things within the facility, the customers are made to bring their plates to a designated area after eating, leaving only the staff to wipe or sanitize the tables.

“In some company canteens, even in schools and canteens and food shops in hospitals, even in some malls, it is already being done,” he said.

Datuin said he has noticed even in parks, people who bring food just leave their garbage where they sat, instead of taking an extra effort to clean or pick up their litter. “It is the discipline we are developing and courtesy to the next users when it becomes automatic among us all to fix up and clean as we go,” he said. – PNA