San Francisco

Compostable Cups, Plates, Bowls, & Utensils

Compostable Cups, Plates, Bowls, & Utensils
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Make sure that the bags are labeled "compostable." If labeled "biodegradable", unfortunately, put them in the landfill.


Use reusable cups, plates, and utensils instead. When you do buy single-use items, look for 100% recycled content, Forest Stewardship Council (FSC)-certified or paper or wooden options.


In general, compostable waste products have a lifetime of a year before they breakdown and are picked out of commercial composters because they look like plastics. Unfortunately, even compostable cups (made of plastic-looking material, not paper) are not actually composted because of they are removed before spending enough time in the composter. "Biodegradable" waste products have a one year or longer breakdown requirement and are intended for deposit in landfill, where they do not add to the toxicity of the site.

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