Polystyrene foam is 100 percent recyclable, which makes it a multi-use material made for long durations. Foam products are heat resistant, insulated and more affordable than other materials. In schools alone, using foam trays saves schools tremendous amounts of money a year compared to using compostable trays, which are a more pricey option.
As more states are quick to add foam bans it is important to think about the impact it will have on small businesses and organizations across states. The prospect of a Connecticut foam ban will put hardworking people out of jobs and increase costs for a lot of companies who rely heavily on foam.
The concept of a foam ban was created in an attempt to both eliminate litter and “go green,” but in turn it is worse to eliminate foam all together. Consumers will start to use other products, which will also be littered just like foam and it will create a vicious cycle.
So, what is a better solution?
Foam recycling centers are popping up around North America and are continuing to expand. In Massachusetts there are currently six foam recycling locations, which are located in Carlisle, Leominster, Newburyport, Reading, Newton and South Hadley. There is room for more recycling centers across New England, which will support all of the smaller states as well.
Recycling centers are a more practical solution than a foam ban since foam is more functional and affordable than its alternative options. Recycling centers are a place where people can come and bring polystyrene foam products that they are no longer using and in turn their products will be refurbished into either hangers, picture frames, rulers or much more.