Hoboken introduces ordinance banning single-use food items in take-out orders. See the plan.

If customers want utensils or condiments with their takeout order in Hoboken, they may need to start asking for them.

Tony Caputo and Lanette Espy

May 17, 2024, 10:42 AM

Updated 27 days ago

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Have you ever ordered takeout and after your meal you find yourself staring at a pile of unopened condiment packets and utensils wrapped in plastic that find their way into a junk drawer or worse, the trash? Well, the city of Hoboken is planning to put an end to that.
If customers want utensils or condiments with their takeout order in Hoboken, they may need to start asking for them.
City officials introduced an ordinance on Wednesday that, if approved, would prohibit restaurants from including single-use food items on take-out orders, like a fork, salt, pepper, ketchup packets, coffee stirrers, etc. in customers' orders unless customers specifically ask and request the items with their order.
Hoboken Councilwoman Tiffanie Fisher said, “I ordered out Chinese for two people, and I had a bag of seven or eight packages of silverware, and I was like this is crazy because all of it would completely go to waste. It was delivered to my home."
So, Fisher said she made a proposal at Wednesday’s council meeting: if customers want plasticware or condiments with their takeout…ask for them.
“Our local Hoboken business alliance is supportive. They want to understand some of the mechanics, but they think it’s a great idea. The few restaurants I spoke to think it’s a great idea reduces their costs,” Fisher said.
If this ordinance is passed, the ban would take effect on Sept. 1.
Restaurants that do not comply will first be issued a written warning and given 30 days to correct the violation. After the warning, Hoboken will start cash violations with restaurants facing fines that will start at $100 but could climb to as high as $500.


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