01 • 01 • 2020
Ban the Foam on Kauai
Kauai outlaws polystyrene ("Styrofoam") foam food containers.
On September 16, 2020, Mayor Derek Kawakami signed Bill 2775 prohibiting retail and food establishments from using, distributing, or selling disposable food service ware made using foam polystyrene. This inclues hinged clamshells, cups, plates, and bowls. Exceptions are made for foods prepared off-island and shipped in such containers from their points of origin. Containers used to package raw or butchered meats, poultry, fish and eggs would also be exempted. The ban takes effect on January 1, 2022.
With the passage of Bill 2775, all four of Hawaii's counties now have polystyrene foam food bans, making Hawaii the 5th “foam free” state in the U.S.
Bill 2775 coincides with administrative ban introduced by Mayor Kawakami on plastic food service containers and utensils in all county facilities and at county functions. Expanded polystyrene foam frequently winds up as litter or ends up polluting our marine environment. Foam blows into our waterways and the ocean, clogs the stomachs of wildlife, and breaks down into smaller pieces that also get eaten. Polystyrene foam furthermore breaks up into smaller pieces but do not readily biodegrade and persists in the environment indefinitely. For more information, please visit the Kauai Chapter website.