Wednesday, August 4, 2021

City of Ventura Bans Expanded Polystyrene (EPS)

Ban applies to food and beverage containers, and is effective July 1, 2021

The City of Ventura joins more than100 California cities and counties in banning the useofexpanded polystyrene (EPS) containerstoreduce the amount of polystyrene litter in the environment.Starting on July 1, 2021, the City of Ventura will prohibit the use of (EPS) containers used by food and beverage providers.

“As a coastal community, we must ensure that we are protecting our environment, natural resources, wildlife, and the health of our community,” said Mayor Sofia Rubalcava.“Polystyreneis one of the most prevalent forms of litterfound in our storm drains, creeks, rivers, beaches, parks, and open spaces. It’s light, hard to remove,andquicklybreaks into small pieces.”

Commonly known as Styrofoam, EPS products are frequently used for take-out food and have significant and long-term environmental impacts.The Ventura City Council unanimously approved the ban on polystyrene containers used at restaurants, grocery stores, convenience stores and other businesses in November 2020.

The EPS ban prohibits any food provider from distributing EPS food and beverage containers.Food providers are defined as any person or business located within the City that provides prepared food or beverages for public consumption. Types of banned EPS items include, but are not limited to, cups, plates, bowls, meat trays, clamshells, and coolers that are not wholly encapsulated by another material.Food providers may choose any non-EPS product to replace banned EPS products.

For a complete list of definitions and exemptions, the full ordinance text can be found here.

A one-year exemption is available for any food and beverage service provider experiencing financial hardship or difficulties from the EPS ban.For more information on the EPS ban, including resourcesto help businesses comply with the ordinance, visitwww.cityofventura.ca.gov/EPSBanor contact by email at EPSban@cityofventura.ca.gov.

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