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Bio-resins Facts & Issues




San Jose, California Bans Foam Containers

On August 27, 2013, in a 9-2 vote, the city council of San Jose, California voted to ban foam food containers. San Jose is the largest US city to ban polystyrene foam food containers. Read the entire article here.




Sunnyvale, California Bans Foam Containers

On December 18, 2012, in a unanimous city council meeting vote, Sunnyvale bans foam food containers. Read the entire article here.


Salinas, California Passes Polystyrene Foam Ban

On August 16, 2011, the City Council, of Salinas, California voted 6-1 in favor of banning polystyrene foam takeout packaging containers. The ban applies to all disposable foodware, including plates, cups, bowls, trays, lids, hinged/lidded containers and bags. Salinas is the first inland city in the county to enact such a ban. Read the entire article here.


Salinas, California Considers Ban on Polystyrene Foam

The City Council of Salinas, California will consider a proposal to ban the use of foam polystyrene within the city. The meeting is to take place on August 16, 2011. The city's mayor, Dennis Donohue, is in favor of such a ban. Read the entire article here.


Burlingame, California Passes Ban on Polystyrene Foam

An on-line publication, Burlingame Patch (www.burlingame.patch.com) reported that the City Council of Burlingame, California, has passed a City Ordinance, effective January 1, 2012, banning polystyrene foam throughout the municipality. Read the entire article here.


Half Moon Bay, California Passes Ban on Polystyrene Foam

An on-line publication, Half Moon Bay Patch (www.halfmoonbay.patch.com) reported that the City Council of Half Moon Bay, California, has passed a City Ordinance, effective August 1, 2011, banning polystyrene foam use throughout the municipality. Read the entire article here.

Researchers Find High Percentage of Small Fish in Pacific Have Ingested Plastic

The Los Angeles Times reported March 11, 2011 that researchers from southern California have found about 35% of fish they collected in the northern Pacific Ocean in 2008 had plastics in their stomachs. Read the entire article here.


House Democrats Slam Styrofoam®

House Democrats continued their protest of the use of Styrofoam cups at Capitol Hill cafeterias, penning a letter to Republican leadership demanding the removal of the disposable coffee cups.


City of San Clemente Bans Polystyrene Takeout Containers

The city of San Clemente has banned the use of expanded polystyrene containers by restaurants, supermarkets, delicatessens and other retail food vendors, effective July 1.

The ban applies to all polystyrene trays, plates, bowls, lids, cartons, cups, hinged and lidded containers and any other polystyrene items designed for one-time use for prepared food, takeout food or leftovers from partially consumed meals.

Source: Plasticsnews.com article


Dyne A Pak Nature™ Foam Tray Featured in NatureWorks LLC "LookBook" of 2010



Mark Verbruggen, C.E.O. of NatureWorks, LLC Presentation  at Innovation Takes Root Conference 2010

Click here for Mark Verbruggen's presentation (PDF format) at the Innovation Takes Root Conference which took place in Dallas, Texas in April of 2010.


Wall Street Journal reports: "Just One Word: Bioplastics"

In the October 19, 2010 edition of the Wall Street Journal it is reported that plastics derived from plant materials make up 0.2% of the estimated 350 million metric tons of plastics consumed each year in the world. It also reports that bioplastics volume could grow at 30% a year over the next 10 years due to growing demand for eco-friendly packaging and other bioplastic products. The Wall Street Journal also notes it is a trend that spans the entire world.


Dyne A Pak, Inc.'s Mario Grenier Quoted about PLA Foam

Mario Grenier, Vice President of Dyne A Pak, Inc., a Turbo-Screws® PLA foam technology licensee, is quoted in an on-line article in Bio-Refining Magazine, stating "Interest is growing exponentially," and "I think if this product right now could be at the same price as polystyrene, we would probably outsell polystyrene. It's a matter of brining the cost in-line with oil-based polymer. At that point, I think there is no limitation on the polymer."  Click here for the article.


City of Hayward, California Bans Polystyrene Foam

The Hayward City Council voted unanimously on Oct. 12, 2010 to ban polystyrene foam food service products and require restaurants to use compostable products, starting July 1. Products covered by the ordinance include plates, cups, bowls, trays, and hinged and lidded containers.

Source: Plasticsnews.com article


Proctor & Gamble Announces Wide Sweeping Sustainability Goals

On September 27, 2010, via webcast, Proctor & Gamble announced some sweeping sustainability goals, among which are:

*     All packaging will be made from renewable or recyclable materials

*    A goal of replacing 25% of all petroleum-based materials with sustainably sourced renewables by the year 2020. P&G spokeswoman Rotha Penn confirmed that the company’s long-term vision is to eliminate all petroleum-based virgin plastic.

Source:    Plastic News - click here for link to article.


City of Hermosa, California Considers Ban on Foam Polystyrene Food Service Ware

Hermosa's Green Task Force voted unanimously Monday night to propose that the city prohibit the use of polystyrene foam containers and other petroleum-based plastic items, such as drink lids or cutlery, from being distributed in local restaurants with takeout orders. If the City Council approves the task force's recommendation, the use of Styrofoam containers and petroleum-based plastic packaging could be banned from local restaurants and community events starting next year. An official recommendation will be submitted for a vote at an upcoming City Council meeting. Click here for the link to the article.


City of Philadelphia Considers Ban on Foam Polystyrene Food Service ware

The City of Philadelphia is considering an ordinance to prohibit the use of disposable food service ware that contains polystyrene foam and to require the use of biodegradable/compostable or recyclable disposable food service ware. The proposed ordinance can be found here and is sponsored by Council members Kenney and DiCicco. The city has scheduled a City Council meeting at 10:00 AM in room 400 on September 16, 2010.


Freedonia Group Announces Compostable Plastics to Grow 16.6% in USA


Demand for degradable plastics in the Unites States is forecast to grow by 16.6 per cent a year to be worth US$380m by 2014 thanks to increased capacity, falling prices and improved performance of materials, said a new report released in August 2010 by The Freedonia Group.


Announcement by Plastic Engineering Associates Licensing, Inc. (Aug. 2010)


Announcing .... the world's first extruded PLA foam sheet for processor grade poultry trays. Made with Turbo-Screws® technology.









A Second Ocean Garbage Patch Found

The great Atlantic garbage patch has been found and researchers are warning it is similar in size and debris to the great Pacific garbage patch found 10 years ago. The debris is harmful to fish and marine mammals, and possibly, humans. One study by undergrad students of the Woods Hole, Massachusetts based Sea Education Association found the size of the Atlantic garbage patch is approximately the size of the area between Cuba and Washington, D.C. Charles Moore, the ocean researcher who found the Pacific garbage patch in 1997 opined that the Atlantic undoubtedly has a comparable amount of plastic in it as the Pacific ocean and further "...plastics are devastating the environment across the world." The United States government is concerned that the pollution could hurts its vital interests. A US federal agency, the NOAA, is co-sponsoring further studies of the Atlantic ocean to measure plastic pollution southeast of Bermuda.


Palo Alto Ban on Polystyrene Containers Takes Effect

The City of Palo Alto, California ban on polystyrene takeout containers starts on Earth Day, 22 April, 2010, according to an on-line article on the "Palo Alto Online" website (see http://www.paloaltoonline.com/news/show_story.php?id=16532). The City Council approved the ban last May in 2009. The ban applies to restaurants, cafeterias, sidewalk and outdoor vendors and caterers.


NatureWorks, LLC Extruded Ingeo Foam Fact Sheet


SPI Position Paper on Oxo-Biodegradable Additives


The Bioplastics Council of the Society of the Plastics Industry (SPI) in January of 2010 issued a position paper entitled "Position Paper On "Oxo-Biodegradable and Other Degradable Additives." Click here to read it in PDF format.


City of Chicago Considers Ban on Foam To Go Containers


In a February 10, 2010 article, the Chicago Sun-Times reported on 10 February 2010 that the City of Chicago is considering a ban on polystyrene foam products that would affect Chicago restaurants, stores and cafeterias.

Chicago Public Schools use and throw away 35 million polystyrene foam lunch trays each year.

If the City Council approves the ban, violators would face fines ranging of up to $300 for the first offense to $500 for subsequent violations. City Hall would be free to grant exemptions, only if there is “no alternative that is both affordable and compostable.”



World Bioplastics Demand (Ktons)

from an article entitled "Future of Bioplastics", Macplas International, December 2009 Issue





Pike Research Reports Sustainable Packaging to Double in Next Five Years

According to Pike Research, in an article posted on the Plastics News website, sustainable packaging will nearly double in revenue during the next five years, and plastics packaging will be the fastest-growing sector, growing from $88 Billion to $170 Billion from 2009 to 2014. For the full article, click here.



Interesting Blog Article on ZDNet about how much Oil we use other than from our automobiles

In an article posted on the ZDNet blog website 1 December 2009, Harry Fuller writes that “most of us use a lot of oil without ever driving a car”. Very few people, I would imagine, know that the traditional plastic resin industry uses 8% of all imported oil in U.S.  and  that equals the amount used by the American airline industry. Fuller interviewed Fred Scheer of Cereplast, who believes that by 2013 overall bio-plastics manufacturing capacity will increase by approximately seven times current levels. For the full article, click here.



Environmentalists Scrutiny turns to Foam Food Trays

Laura Isensee of Reuters Life! reported November 4, 2009 that environmentalists are focusing their attention on foam polystyrene food tray packages used for meat, fruits and vegetables. The trays are the kind which are commonly found in your local supermarket & grocery stores. To read the article, click here.


The Great Garbage Patch in the Pacific

Caution: This may be disturbing to your children & grandchildren




UPI Reports Companies, National Parks, Restaurants, E.P.A. Embracing Zero Waste

A UPI article released 20 October 2009 states that companies, national parks and even restaurants are embracing the "zero waste" movement in the USA. The article quotes Jon Johnston, a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency manager who is helping lead the U.S. zero-waste movement: "The zero waste movement means shunning polystyrene foam containers, or other packaging that is not biodegrdable (emphasis own), and recycling or composting what you can.

Source: UPI 20 October 2009 web article


NatureWorks LLC Short-Lists Sites for Second IngeoResin Plant

US-based Natureworks LLC, the world's largest producer of bioplastics, has shortlisted four countries - Thailand, China, Malaysia and Singapore - for a 100-million-dollar plant in Asia, news reports said Saturday.
Marc Verbruggen, president of the Minneapolis-based company, was in Bangkok recently to assess Thailand's potential as a base for its Asia plant which is expected to start operations in 2014.

'It is too early for us to tell where to establish the new plant, because the decision will depend on how soon the global economy can recover, but Thailand is very interesting since it is one of the few countries in the world that grow plenty of sugar cane and tapioca, which will help us secure the feedstock,' Verbruggen told The Nation newspaper.

Natureworks' US plant has an annual production capacity of 140,000 tons of bioplastics, accounting for 90 per cent of the current global supply.

Bioplastics, made from renewable biomass sources such as vegetable oil or starch, compete with petroleum-based plastics, which are now benefiting from low oil prices.

Verbruggen said the long-term outlook for bioplastics was positive because more consumers are interested in ecological products, and prices would be competitive again if oil prices rise above 80 dollars a barrel, compared with 50 dollars at present.

He acknowledged that Thailand's political situation, marred by more than a year of street protests, was a factor in deciding where to site the plant.

'But we observe the situation not only in Thailand but also other countries like China,' Verbruggen said.



Palo Alto California Bans Polystyrene Foam from Local Food Establishments

The City Council of Palo Alto voted April 27, 2009 to ban expanded-polystyrene containers from local food establishments. The council voted 8-0 to approve city staff's proposed ban, which would force restaurants to switch to other forms of containers within a year.

The ordinance, which was passed with little discussion and virtually no opposition, is one component of the city's broader effort to reduce waste and pollution.

Palo Alto joins a growing wave of cities that are banning polystyrene. San Francisco, Oakland and Malibu are among the cities that already have similar bans in place, as do Oregon and Seattle.

In proposing the ban, staff argued that the lightweight polystyrene poses a threat because it breaks up easily, creates litter and doesn't biodegrade (emphasis own). Small chunks often end up in rivers and creeks, where they are occasionally mistaken for food by various marine species, staff told the council Monday.


NatureWorks LLC just issued a press release with some exciting news from their CEO & President, Mark Verbruggen:

MINNETONKA, Minn. - (Business Wire, March 12, 2009) Anticipating rising global demand for alternatives to petroleum based plastics, NatureWorks LLC, maker of Ingeo™ natural plastic resin, is assessing locations for a second manufacturing plant.

With current sales of its Ingeo™ bioresin in Europe, Asia Pacific, and the Americas, NatureWorks will evaluate the location for a potential new resin production facility based on projected growth in these regions and the availability of plant-based feedstock required for Ingeo™ processing.

“Investing in a second production facility would support brand owners committed to environmentally preferable alternatives to petroleum-based plastics and would be a significant step forward for NatureWorks,” said Marc Verbruggen, president and CEO. “We anticipate continued advancements in the resin’s performance, as well as an increase in the number of products and applications using Ingeo™. We’re starting our assessment now, recognizing that typical timeframes for design and construction of such facilities can be three years after a decision is made.”

NatureWorks was the first company to produce a natural plastic resin in commercial quantities. Late last year, the Ingeo™ facility in Blair, Nebraska, inaugurated a new manufacturing process that further lowered CO2 emissions and reduced the energy required to produce Ingeo™ bioresin. By mid-year 2009, equipment installation and commissioning currently underway will enable the Blair facility to produce up to its full Ingeo™ design capacity of 140,000 metric tons (~ 300 million pounds).

NatureWorks portfolio of Ingeo™ biopolymers made from plants, not oil, environmentally outperforms petroleum-based polymers. With performance and product appeal in targeted fibers and plastics applications, Ingeo™ has seen steady adoption and growth in markets that include packaging, consumer electronics, clothing, textiles, and personal care products.

About NatureWorks

NatureWorks LLC is a company dedicated to meeting the world’s needs today without compromising the earth’s ability to meet the needs of tomorrow. NatureWorks LLC is the first company to offer a family of commercially available low carbon footprint biopolymers derived from 100 percent annually renewable resources with performance and economics that compete with oil-based plastics and fibers.

Ingeo and the Ingeo logo are trademarks or registered trademarks of NatureWorks LLC in the USA and other countries.


Here is a very interesting article on oxo-biodegradable additives from the February 2009 issue of Packaging World Magazine.


Feedback on oxo-biodegradables

Published in Packaging World Magazine, February 2009 , p. 63

Written by Steve Mojo, Executive Director, Biodegradable Products Institute

Research leading up to last month’s Lead Off column included a call to the Biodegradable Products Institute, whose executive director comments here.

Packaging World Editor Pat Reynolds’ January column on oxo-biodegradability brought to light many of the key issues surrounding a controversial subject. But because his column could only scratch the surface of this complex topic, it doesn’t hurt to take a slightly more in-depth look at oxo-biodegradability and discuss a few of the issues and implications that swirl around it. These additives have three shortcomings.

First, while many of your readers may not be familiar with the term “oxo-biodegradable,” the concept and materials are not new. The use of transition metals to promote oxidation is very well known. Patents in this area trace back decades. Many converters, in fact, have already tried and rejected these technologies.

Second, no scientific data has ever been presented to show that oxo-biodegradable additives will render plastics completely biodegradable under the anaerobic conditions found in landfills. This is reinforced by a recent NAD finding that the claims of one oxo-biodegradable supplier, Dallas-based GP Plastics, were not supported and did not meet the requirements of the Federal Trade Commissions Environmental Marketing Guides. This from a December 8, 2008, press release: “National Advertising Division of the Council of Better Business Bureaus (NAD) noted that the advertiser’s claim that PolyGreen bags are disposable through ordinary channels should similarly be supported by competent and reliable scientific evidence that the entire plastic bag will completely break down and return to nature…within a reasonably short period of time after customary disposal. However, NAD determined that the evidence in the record did not support that claim.”

Third, “recyclability” claims of oxo-biodegradable plastics are also unsubstantiated. In fact, large recyclers of polyethylene—Trex (www.trex.com) is a good example—have expressed concerns about the negative impacts that oxo-biodegradable additives will have on recycling. In September of last year, Trex put it this way: “Unless and until the long-term durability testing concludes that the oxo-biodegradable polyethylene (OBPE) will not have an adverse effect on our product, Trex cannot support the introduction of OBPE materials into traditional recyclable Polyethylene streams.”

On the PET front, the Association of Postconsumer Plastic Recyclers issued this cautionary warning on oxo-biodegradability: “APR asks those who advocate and specify degradable additives to consider the sustainability implications of degradable additives that lower the functionality of recycled post consumer plastics when included with recyclable plastics. Degradable additives that weaken products or shorten the useful life of durable plastics would have a strongly negative impact on post-consumer plastics recycling. APR provides its PET Critical Guidance and Applications Guidance to evaluate PET bottle innovations.”

Biodegradable products and packaging are simply not the panacea to solid waste that many suppliers claim, especially when these products wind up in landfills. The work of William Rathje (author of Rubbish) shows that today’s landfills are designed to preserve our trash, not make it magically disappear through “biodegradation.” Rathje found large amounts of readily “biodegradable” materials during his 15 landfill excavations throughout North America in the 1980’s. For example, he notes 40-year-old newspapers that were still legible and “fresh looking” lettuce that was 5 years old. I would urge that your readers familiarize themselves with his work in order to better understand what does and does not happen in a landfill.

In conclusion, there should be emphasis on the creation of infrastructure to manage “compostables” rather than search for “biodegradable” alternatives that will wind up in landfills. Perpetuating the misconception that oxo-biodegradadable materials will fully biodegrade in a landfill works against the Reduce, Reuse and Recycle philosophies that have been developed over the past two decades. I would urge packaging professionals to continue to focus on solutions that can be diverted from landfills and incinerators to recycling and composting facilities. This would be in keeping with the Environmental Protection Agency’s Solid Waste Hierarchy.

To get in touch with the Biodegradable Products Institute, email them at info@bpiworld.org

Article reprinted with permission of Biodegradable Products Institute. Copyright 2009 BPI.


Here's a recent press release from Sealed Air Corporation, Cryovac Divison:

Sealed Air’s Cryovac® NatureTRAY™ Package Receives Certification from the Biodegradable Products Institute
DUNCAN, S.C. (Feb. 10, 2009) – The Biodegradable Products Institute (BPI) has awarded its certification to Sealed Air’s Cryovac® NatureTRAY™ package, confirming that the package meets the ASTM D6400 standard for compostable plastics as being biodegradable and compostable in municipal and industrial facilities

The Cryovac® NatureTRAY™ package is the first BPI-certified package produced in the United States made entirely from plant products acting as a substitute for oil-based polystyrene foam trays. Created with NatureWorks® Ingeo™ biopolymers, the Cryovac® NatureTRAY™ package delivers all the benefits of traditional polystyrene foam trays, but is compostable in industrial, commercial or municipal compost facilities, where available.

In bestowing its certification, BPI reviewed the results of independent laboratory tests of the Cryovac® NatureTRAY™ package to ensure it would biodegrade and disintegrate during composting at a similar rate to other compostable materials. The tests also included ecotoxicity and heavy metals testing to confirm that degradation of the tray will not diminish the value or utility of the resulting compost.

“BPI certification gives our customers peace of mind and confidence that the product they are buying is compostable according to the highest standards,” said Richard Douglas, marketing director for rigid packaging and absorbents. “The Cryovac® NatureTRAY™ package, made from an annually renewable resource, continues to meet consumers’ demand for high-quality sustainable packaging.”

The NatureTRAY™ package can handle the robust demands of automated in-plant packaging and can be used for case ready packaging of poultry, beef, pork and fish. The sustainable tray can be used on any standard automated in-store wrapping equipment in supermarkets. It is available in a range of sizes and in an all-natural un-pigmented white color.

For more information about the Cryovac® NatureTRAY™ package, call 1-800-845-3456 or visit www.naturetray.com.


Dyne A Pak, Inc. announces in their November 2009 Press Release:





Food Industry Can Now Serve Customers and the Environment

With New Dyne-a-Pak Nature™ Foam Trays


February, 2009 – Leading packaging producer Dyne-a-Pak has introduced a foam tray made from plant material that allows food and grocery businesses to demonstrate environmental stewardship by reducing their carbon footprint.

The manufacture of Dyne-a-Pak Nature™ foam trays requires 50 per cent less water and 65 per cent less fossil fuel, and emits 90 per cent fewer greenhouse gases, than traditional petroleum-based polystyrene products.

This award-winning innovation presents grocery chains, food distributors, fast food outlets, bakeries, and meat packers with a green packaging option that today’s consumers increasingly value. Dyne-a-Pak Nature™ foam trays are the first compostable foam tray products in Canada and one of the first available in the United States.

“This is the next evolution in smart food packaging,” said Mario Grenier, Vice President & General Manager of the company. “Not only do these new trays save valuable energy and resources at the manufacturing stage, they are also compostable and thus can help reduce waste going to landfill.”

The IngeoTM biopolymer used in these trays is made using a process developed by NatureWorks LLC. During the production, dextrose sugar is extracted from agricultural feedstocks, fermented and distilled to become lactic acid, then transformed from pellets to packaging. “The breakthrough we achieved, working with NatureWorks LLC and Turbo-Screws® technology from Plastic Engineering Associates Licensing, Inc. from Boca Raton Florida was making a biopolymer into foam for food packaging,” Grenier explained.

Last fall, Dyne-a-Pak Nature™ foam trays were recognized for product manufacturing innovation at the QSR Magazine-FPI Foodservice Packaging Awards. John R. Burke, president of the Foodservice Packaging Institute (FPI), stated that “Dyne-a-Pak’s foam trays are a welcome product in the foodservice sector. We believe this product offers a new, exciting packaging alternative for grocers, meat packers, bakeries and others, wanting to reduce their environmental footprint.”

Grenier noted that today’s consumers are becoming increasingly aware of environmentally sound products and are always looking to support sustainable solutions in the marketplace. “Dyne-a-Pak is proud to be leading the charge in bringing this innovative solution to North America’s food packaging markets.”

Dyne-a-Pak Nature™ foam trays were tested under ASTM-6400 and EN13432 standards by Organic Waste Systems (OWS) laboratories in Belgium. In order to meet those standards, materials must biodegrade in less than 180 days within an industrial composting environment. Dyne-a-Pak Nature™ foam trays have now been certified by the Biodegradable Products Institute (BPI) and will soon include the widely-recognized BPI symbol – one of the most recognizable symbols in composting. BPI approval indicates the foam trays will disintegrate and biodegrade swiftly and safely in professionally managed composting facilities.


Please note: High-resolution photos are available for downloading (from the Dyne A Pak website). Click for the photo you want.



For further information or for interviews, please contact:

Jaclyn Clare




About Dyne-a-Pak:

Based in Laval, Quebec, Canada, Dyne-a-Pak is one of North America’s leading producers of foam meat trays, padded trays, and foam fast food containers. Dyne-a-Pak supplies grocery chains, food distributors, fast food outlets, bakeries and meat packers in North America with innovative and modern packaging solutions. Dyne-a-Pak’s leading-edge facilities operate under strict quality control processes to meet the highest industry standards and provide safe, modern products to its customers. www.dyneapak.com

 About NatureWorks LLC:

NatureWorks LLC is a company dedicated to meeting the world’s needs today without compromising the earth’s ability to meet the needs of tomorrow. NatureWorks LLC is the first company to offer a family of commercially available low carbon footprint biopolymers derived from renewable resources with performance and economics that compete with oil-based plastics and fibers. NatureWorks LLC is a joint venture between Cargill and Teijin Limited of Japan. www.natureworksllc.com

Municipalities With Polystyrene Ordinances

Alameda    Expanded polystyrene ban, requirement that all takeout food packaging be recyclable/compostable (January 2008).

Berkeley    Expanded polystyrene ban, requirement that 50% of takeout food packaging be recyclable or compostable (1988).

Calabasas    Expanded polystyrene ban, requirement that all takeout food packaging be recyclable or compostable (July 2007).

Capitola    Expanded polystyrene ban, requirement that all takeout food packaging be compostable (December 2006).

Carmel     Expanded polystyrene ban, requirement that 50% of takeout food packaging be recyclable, compostable or reusable (1989).

Emeryville    Expanded polystyrene ban, requirement that all takeout food packaging be recyclable or compostable (March 2007).

Fairfax    Expanded polystyrene ban.

Hercules     Expanded polystyrene ban (May 2008).

Laguna Beach    Expanded polystyrene ban, requirement that all plastic takeout food packaging be recyclable (July 2008).

Los Angeles City    Government facility expanded polystyrene ban (July 2008). The Los Angeles council also voted to end official city purchases of polystyrene containers for takeaway food, beginning 2009.

Malibu    Expanded polystyrene ban (September 2005).

Millbrae   Polystyrene ban, requirement that all plastic takeout food packaging be recyclable or compostable (January 2008).

Monterey    Expanded polystyrene ban with requirement that all takeout food packaging be recyclable or compostable (March 2009).

Newport Beach    Expanded polystyrene ban (October 2008).

Oakland    Expanded polystyrene ban, requirement that all takeout food packaging be compostable, businesses that generate a large portion of litter must pay a litter fee (2006).

Orange County    Government facility expanded polystyrene ban, including cities of Aliso Viejo, Huntington Beach, Laguna Hills, Laguna Woods, San Clemente, San Jaun Capistrano and the Santa Margarita Water District.

Pacific Grove    Expanded polystyrene ban with requirement that all takeout food packaging be recyclable or compostable.

Palo Alto   Expanded polystyrene ban passed City Council 8-0 vote (April 2009); effective one year from enactment.

Pittsburg    Requirement that 50% of takeout food packaging be recyclable or compostable (1991).

San Bruno    Polystyrene ban with requirement that all plastic takeout food packaging be recyclable or compostable (January 2009).

San Francisco    Expanded polystyrene ban with requirement that all takeout food packaging be recyclable or compostable (June 2007).

San Mateo County    Government facility expanded polystyrene ban (April 2008).

Santa Cruz    Expanded polystyrene ban with requirement that all takeout food packaging be recyclable or compostable (January 2008).

Santa Cruz County    Expanded polystyrene ban (January 2008).

Santa Monica    Polystyrene ban with requirement that all plastic takeout food packaging be recyclable (December 2006).

Sonoma County  Government facility expanded polystyrene ban.

South San Francisco    Polystyrene ban with requirement that all plastic takeout food packaging be recyclable or compostable (October 2008).

Ventura County    Government facility expanded polystyrene ban.

Watsonville    Expanded polystyrene ban, requirement that all takeout food packaging be recyclable or compostable (March 2009).



New York State Ban on Polystyrene

A00428 Summary:

BILL NO    A00428

SAME AS    Same as S 2832

SPONSOR    Kavanagh (MS)

COSPNSR    Colton, Eddington, Galef, Koon, Lupardo, Magnarelli, Millman,

           O'Donnell, Schimel, Spano, Stirpe, Titone, Alfano, Errigo, McDonough,

           Walker, Titus, Paulin, Lopez P

MLTSPNSR   Arroyo, Benjamin, Boyland, Brook-Krasny, Cook, DelMonte, Dinowitz,

           Glick, Gunther, Hooper, Jeffries, McEneny, Pheffer, Reilly, Thiele,



Add Art 27 Title 26 SS27-2601 - 27-2605, En Con L

Relates to food service waste reduction; prohibits the use of polystyrene foam

by contractors and lessees who deal with the state through state and municipal



A00428 Actions:

BILL NO    A00428

01/07/2009 referred to environmental conservation

A00428 Votes:

A00428 Memo:


TITLE OF BILL :  An act to amend the environmental conservation law,

in relation to food service waste reduction

 PURPOSE : The purpose of the bill is to discourage the use of

disposable Styrofoam food service ware by any person or entity that

has a contract with an agency or municipality, and to study the

feasibility of a Styrofoam ban in New York State.


Requires that any state department, agency, board, public benefit

corporation, public authority, commission, municipality, and their

contractors and lessees use food service ware made from material other

than polystyrene foam, unless there is no compostable or recyclable

alternative available at a price not more than 15 percent higher.


Requires the Department of Environmental Conservation to conduct a

study on the desirability, feasibility and environmental impact of a

statewide ban on the use of disposable Styrofoam food service ware.


This bill would add a new title 26 to Article 27 of the Environmental

Conservation Law.


Styrofoam is a liquid hydrocarbon that is commercially manufactured

from petroleum, a quickly disappearing commodity. Each year Americans

throwaway 25,000,000 Styrofoam cups, or 1,369 tons of Styrofoam

products every day. A single Styrofoam cup can take up to 500 years to

fully disintegrate.


Styrofoam is a notorious pollutant that is very difficult to recycle

due to its light weight and low scrap value. It is generally not

accepted in curbside programs, is seldom able to be reused, takes up a

considerable amount of space in landfills, and takes a very long time

to fully decompose. Due to the physical properties of Styrofoam, the

United States Environmental Protection Agency states "that such

materials can have serious impact on human health, wildlife, and the

aquatic environment," because the product breaks down and can clog

waterways, or to be mistaken for food by wildlife.


One of the components of Styrofoam, styrene is a known hazardous

substance which is a suspected carcinogen and neurotoxin. Many people

do not realize that when they re-heat food in a Styrofoam product

using a microwave, toxins may be released into their food.


This bill would address the environmental impacts of Styrofoam while

allowing for exceptions in cases where there is no viable alternative

product of comparable cost.


 LEGISLATIVE HISTORY :  2008: A 11466A (Kavanagh) - Passed Assembly




 EFFECTIVE DATE : This act shall take effect immediately provided,

however, that sections one and two of this act shall take effect on

the one hundred twentieth day after it shall have become a law.


US Navy

Here is a press release issued the the Department of the Navy:

New Procurement Program Advances Navy 'Green' Initiatives

Apr 20, 2009 -

MECHANICSBURG, Pa. (NNS) -- The new Department of the Navy Green Procurement Program Implementation Guide is harnessing the fleet's purchasing power in support environmentally friendly and energy-efficient technologies and products.

Assistant Secretary of the Navy for Installations and Environment BJ Penn and Assistant Secretary of the Navy for Research, Development and Acquisition Sean J. Stackley signed the Department of the Navy Green Procurement Program Implementation Guide Feb. 5.

The Guide, written jointly by Naval Supply Systems Command's (NAVSUP) Naval Inventory Control Point (NAVICP) and Marine Corps Headquarters, makes it easy to set up a Green Procurement Program (GPP) for an installation or activity, and makes buying green products—like energy efficient items, biobased products, non-ozone depleting substances, recovered material, and recovered material—easy. It also helps Department of Navy (DON) personnel understand and execute Department of Defense (DOD) GPP policy.

"The Guide provides a clear methodology for implementing the Department of Defense's Green Procurement Program strategy within the organizational structure of the Navy," said Blair Collins, Navy point of contact for green procurement at NAVICP.

"One of the easiest ways to go green is through the purchase of green products," Collins said. "Green products are available from the General Services Administration (www.gsaadvantage.gov). When accessing the Web site, go to "Special Programs" and click on "Environmental."

Additionally, green products are available on the Department of Defense EMALL (http://www.dlis.dla.mil/emall.asp). When accessing this Web site a green tree appears beside all green products, along with two capital letters that designate a specific environmental category.

Buying green can be applied to all purchases of products and services by NAVSUP personnel and their contractors, regardless of how the products or services are purchased or what the dollar value is. Examples include commodity purchases, construction contracts, service contracts, items bought from base supply stores, and items used for in-house construction and services. Buying green pertains to all NAVSUP facilities, operations, and systems. Policy requirements apply to all developers, contracting officers, and Government purchase card holders.

The guide is available for all activities in the NAVSUP Enterprise to use and has been posted on the Joint Service Pollution Prevention and Sustainability Technical Library at


The guide supersedes NAVSUP Publication 728, dated September 2001.

NAVSUP's primary mission is to provide U.S. naval forces with quality supplies and services. With headquarters in Mechanicsburg, Pa., and employing a diverse, worldwide workforce of more than 25,500 military and civilian personnel, NAVSUP oversees logistics programs in the areas of supply operations, conventional ordnance, contracting, resale, fuel, transportation, and security assistance. In addition, NAVSUP is responsible for quality of life issues for our naval forces, including food service, postal services, Navy Exchanges, and movement of household goods.

 For more news from Naval Supply Systems Command, visit www.navy.mil/local/navsup/.


Issaquah, Washington considers ban on polystyrene food containers

June 2009.  The Issaquah City Council is considering a ban on Styrofoam food containers.  The full council is expected to vote sometime during the summer of 2009. If approved, the ban will go into effect sometime in 2010.



City of Maui, Hawaii Considers Ban on Polystyrene

A hearing on whether to ban polystyrene products is heading to the Maui County Council's Infrastructure Management Committee. The committee hearing won't be scheduled until at least next month in July of 2009.

Maui councilman Mike Victorino introduced the bill June 5. The bill comes 10 months after the Maui council banned conventional plastic carryout bags, which is to be implemented in 2011.Maui's proposed polystyrene ban also would take effect in 2011.

Polystyrene food containers, including carryout clamshells, are included, but coolers are exempt.

If passed, Maui would follow the heels of several California cities, including Palo Alto, San Francisco, and Millbrae, in banning polystyrene foam, which environmentalists say does not break down easily.

Palo Alto's City Council voted in April to ban polystyrene clamshells, plates and cups, beginning April 22, 2010, the next Earth Day.



Frito-Lay on ABC 's Good Morning America Showcases Sunchip Bag Made With NatureWorks' Ingeo Resin


Link to video:    http://abcnews.go.com/GMA/JustOneThing/story?id=7867483



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