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NH Skip the Stuff

NH Skip the Stuff

Pass a Skip the Stuff Ordinance in Dover and Portsmouth

The New Hampshire chapter of The Surfrider Foundation is excited to be kicking off a “Skip The Stuff” campaign in 2023! This campaign aims to reduce the single-use foodware waste generated by New Hampshire’s local restaurant industry. What is Skip The Stuff and how does it work? Read our FAQ below to find out more:

Every year, billions of unused straws, utensils, napkins, condiment packets, and other accessories are included in take-out and delivery orders and just thrown away. We can change this! Let's #SkipTheStuff!

The Problem: Most restaurants provide these accessories for take-out meals even if the customer doesn’t need them.

The Solution: Customers need to ask first. Let customers know you will not provide accessories for takeout or delivery unless they request them. If customers need foodware accessories, they can request them. If they don’t need them, you and your customers can prevent waste and reduce costs by exercising your right to #SkipTheStuff.


What is “Skip The Stuff?”

Skip The Stuff (“STS”) is a national campaign that aims to reduce foodware waste by ensuring that restaurant takeout orders do not automatically include single-use accessories such as plastic utensils, straws, condiments, and napkins. Under an STS policy, these items would be added only upon request by the customer.

STS was originally developed by Upstream Solutions (which offers an STS “toolkit” of campaign resources), and there are multiple models from other organizations including Just-Zero and Beyond Plastics. STS campaigns have since been taken up by environmental advocacy groups around the country, including local Surfrider chapters. Most recently, the New York City Chapter celebrated the passage of an STS bill in New York City that was signed into law by Mayor Eric Adams on February 1, 2023.

STS policies are tailored to the needs of the local communities that they are passed in. But as a general guideline, check out this FAQ developed by the City of Denver, Colorado.

In general, single-use condiments would include packaged items such as:

  •       Sauces (like ketchup, relish, mayo, mustard, soy sauce, salad dressing, hot sauce)
  •       Seasonings (like salt, pepper, parmesan cheese, red pepper flakes)
  •       Spreads (like cream cheese, jelly, butter)

And single-use food service ware items would include:

  •       Knives, forks, spoons, sporks, and chopsticks
  •       Napkins
  •       Straws
  •       Stirrers, splash sticks, and cocktail sticks

New Hampshire is in the midst of addressing significant waste management issues. The state’s waste policies were not designed to reduce or avoid waste generation, which has contributed to the state’s dwindling landfill capacity. The New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services has estimated that the state may run out of landfill space—both public and private—by the mid-2030s.[4] State policymakers are calling for a new waste management framework that promotes waste reduction and avoidance over recycling and landfilling.[5]

STS policies can help the Granite State meet its new waste management goals, by cutting down on the use and disposal of single-use foodware items!

How can I get involved in Skip The Stuff with Surfrider New Hampshire?

Contact our Campaigns Coordinator at!

You can also connect with Surfrider NH by attending one of our monthly beach clean-ups or one of our monthly meetings held at The Loaded Question brewery in Portsmouth! Follow us on Instagram to stay informed: