Question:

May one tear open the wrapping of a pack of plastic plates on shabbos if one has regular dishes but prefers to use plastic

Answer:

It is permitted to rip open the wrapping on the plastic plates etc., even if you aren’t stuck, without any problem. The reason is because these wrappings are there only as a one-time covering, until the product is ready to be used, and it was never considered a vessel, therefore breaking it isn’t a problem. It is preferred however that it be opened in a way that ruins it, that it cannot be used as a receptacle, Also be careful not to rip any letters or pictures, because of mochaik ( erasing).

Sources:

O”CH 314- 8, Ketzos Hashulchan 145 ftnt 4, Chazon Ish O”CH 61-2,  Shmiras Shabbos K’hilchoso ( ner edition) 9-13,  M”B 340-41.

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