Resolution No. 457


Director of Government Affairs


Resolution No. 457


Ban on Small Businesses Using Polystyrene Food Service Ware



The Business Council of New York State, Inc., the state’s largest statewide employer association, opposes this resolution that would prohibit small businesses from using polystyrene foam food service ware. This resolution is without merit and will be a burden on small businesses in Albany County.

Polystyrene packaging meets the demands of today’s consumer demands by offering an economical and high quality food service product. Consumers enjoy the benefits of sturdy and strong polystyrene foodservice containers. Polystyrene packaging insulates extremely well to maintain food temperature, which can reduce food waste due to spoilage or damaged packaging and leakage. It is used by numerous small businesses because it meets customer needs at a price that small businesses can afford.

The Business Council is just one of the many organizations, representing a significant number of businesses, who believed that the county’s original prohibition on polystyrene food containers was unwise and unwarranted. There is little doubt that extending the prohibition to small businesses will have a significant cost to the County’s businesses.

It should be noted that the United States Food and Drug Administration which regulates the safety of food contact packaging and has approved the use of polystyrene since 1958, so too have governments around the world.

The Business Council strongly supports government action to address real environmental and health issues, including climate change, consumer safety, recycling, and remanufacturing, but we are concerned that fears and misinformation at times drive government action and not science and reason.

The Business Council urges the Albany County Legislature to reject this additional mandate on small businesses.