Foodware Packaging Reduction

Plastic utensils and straws

Reducing disposable foodware packaging helps the environment.

 

To protect local waterways and oceans from plastic pollution, reduce litter, and encourage Zero Waste, the City of Palo Alto is creating a Foodware Packaging Reduction Plan. As the first step, the City is considering banning plastic straws, utensils, stirrers, and other single-use plastic items.

 

Quick Links

""Banned Foodware Packaging
""Foodware Packaging Ordinance - What your business needs to know
""Timeline
""Reducing Takeout Waste - Video explaining the problem and solutions


Banned Foodware Packaging

The draft ordinance is proposing to ban the following items:

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Plastic Straws 

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Plastic Utensils 

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Plastic Stirrers

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Plastic Beverage Plugs 

 

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Foodware Packaging Ordinance

What your business needs to know.

Definitions:

  • Reusable - Reusable foodware items are items that were meant to be washed and reused many times.
  • Disposable - Disposable foodware items are that were meant to be used only once and then discarded. These items can be recyclable, compostable, or landfill. 
  • Compostable - Compostable foodware items are items that are accepted in Palo Alto's compost program.
  • Upon Request - Upon Request means offering foodware items to customers only if they ask for them or via a self-serve station.

Items affected:

Plastic utensils, straws, stirrers, drink plugs,and other small plastic foodware items.

Who is affected:

All food service establishments will be affected. This includes restaurants, bars, delis, grocery stores, food trucks, hotels, convenience stores —anyone serving food in Palo Alto.

What is required:

  • Use only reusable or compostable utensils, straws, stirrers, drink plugs, and other small plastic foodware items.
  • Compostable items must be acceptable in the City's compost collection program. Detailed list of acceptable materials
  • Offer these disposable items (i.e., the compostable items) only upon request or via a self-serve station.

 

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Timeline

  • Fall 2018 - Stakeholder feedback
  • Winter 2018/2019 - Formulate ordinance
  • Spring 2019 - Ordinance presented to City Council for approval
  • Fall 2019 -  Ordinance anticipated to take effect

 

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Reducing Takeout Waste

Check out this Vox video. It does a good job explaining the problem and solutions to takeout waste.