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Polystyrene foam container ban

Information
Restaurants, grocery stores and nonprofit food servers cannot serve or package food or beverages in Styrofoam™ or other polystyrene foam containers.

Policy overview

Restaurants, grocery stores and nonprofit food servers in Portland are prohibited from serving or packaging food and beverage in products made of polystyrene foam.

Polystyrene is often called Styrofoam, but there are many brands of foam to-go containers, bowls, cups, food trays, and other packaging, all of which are included in this ban.

Penalties

Using these products could result in a fine of up to $100 for the first violation.

Report an out-of-compliance business

Contact the City's Garbage and Recycling assistance staff.

More about the policy

Products made of this material are extremely difficult to recycle and often end up as litter in our open spaces, rivers and oceans. They break down into small toxic pieces that wildlife and aquatic animals consume because they can’t distinguish the small pieces from food.

Find more details about the ban at Portland City Code 17.102.310 Prohibition on Certain PSF Uses and Enforcement, Notice, and Fines.

Polystyrene recycling options

Polystyrene foam is not allowed in in your home or business recycling. Drop-off recycling options are limited, but if you have polystyrene foam you want to recycle, use Metro’s Find a Recycler website to see if any private recycling companies are currently accepting it (sometimes requiring a fee).