Last year food companies were told that they should contribute to some of the costs of removing chewing gum which litters streets up and down the country. The Local Government Association (LGA) said chewing gum firms should make a “substantial contribution” to the huge cost of clearing the “ugly” waste on britain’s pavements.
The LGA estimates the annual cost of removing pieces trodden into pavements across England has reached £56 million, with around six tons dropped in the West End of London alone each year.
Jamie Oliver has recently released an article stating how if he was Prime Minister he would ban chewing gum completely until a biodegradable option was available.
In a similar proposal Lee Kuan Yew, former leader of Singapore, passed legislation banning chewing gum from the small nation. The punishment for illegal gum trafficking was never corporal, but even for a first offence it could include a fine of up to S$100,000 (£49,000) and up to two years in prison.
However chewing gum does have its benefits. Other than the obvious health benefit to the mouth, teeth and gums some teachers encourage students to chew gum during tests to help increase alertness and concentration.
Recent research has shown that the rhythmic motion of chewing gum has a stress-reducing effect and also can help remove that catchy song stuck in your head.
Is a complete ban one step too far or is it a necessary solution to keep Britain’s streets clean?
Cordant Specialist Services offer chewing gum removal and numerous other services such as high level cleans, specialist deep cleans, critical environment cleaning and biohazard cleaning.