Seattle has become the first place in North America to require restaurants to use compostable or recyclable items that are meant for only one use.
Put into effect July 1, the ordinance requires restaurants, coffee shops, food courts, cafeterias and other food service businesses to stop throwing away single-use food-service ware and packaging including napkins, paper bags, wooden coffee stir sticks, clamshells and hot and cold beverage cups and lids among others.
“With our requirement that food service packaging must be compostable or recyclable, Seattle has taken a big step toward a zero waste future,” said City Councilmember Mike O’Brien. “You have to ask yourself why we should make stuff just to throw it away. With compostable and recyclable food containers, we’re closing the loop.”