Want plastic utensils at the restaurant? Get ready to ask

Beginning September 2, the ‘upon request’ single-use food ware law will take effect.

Nadia Galindo

Aug 25, 2023, 4:29 PM

Updated 233 days ago

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Patrons of restaurants and establishments selling food in Westchester County will soon have to ask for plastic utensils and food ware.
Beginning September 2, the ‘upon request’ single-use food ware law will take effect.
The law was approved unanimously by the Westchester Board of Legislators six months ago.
"I think most importantly it's going to help people to think about what they actually need and order it,” said Leg. Nancy Barr. “And I think that's going to spill into other areas of consumerism.” 
The new law is an effort to further reduce plastic waste in the county.
Businesses will have a six-month grace period to comply before fines can be issued.
Outline of the new law:
  • Businesses serving food within the county may only provide single-use food ware and condiment packets to dine-in or take-away customers upon request.
  • Food ware items or condiment packets must be provided individually.
  • The law applies to single-use forks, knives, spoons, chopsticks, cup sleeves, beverage lids and condiment packets.
  • Single-use plastic beverage stirrers and “splash sticks” will no longer be permitted.
  • Utensils available in establishments in self-service containers for consumers must be either individually wrapped, or placed face-down, single-item dispensers are recommended.
  • The law applies to in-person and take-out orders and food delivery apps.


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