NJ’s Ban on Plastic Carryout Bags & Polystyrene Foam in Stores, Grocery Stores & Food Service Businesses
Starting May 4, 2022, New Jersey retail stores, grocery stores and food service businesses may not provide or sell single-use plastic carryout bags and polystyrene foam food service products. Single-use paper carryout bags are allowed to be provided or sold, except by grocery stores equal to or larger than 2500 square feet, which may only provide or sell reusable carryout bags. After November 4, 2021, plastic straws may be provided only upon the request of the customer.
- Bags used to contain or wrap uncooked meat, fish or poultry.
- Bags used to package loose items.
- Bags used to contain live animals.
- Bags used to contain food sliced or prepared to order, including soup and hot food.
- Laundry, dry cleaning or garment bags.
- Bags provided by a pharmacy to carry prescriptions.
- Newspaper bags.
- Any similar bag, as determined by the Department (DEP) pursuant to rule, regulation, or guidance.
- Packages of single-use plastic straws and those pre-packaged with items like juice boxes may still be sold in stores.
- Disposable, long-handled polystyrene foam soda spoons when required and used for thick drinks.
- Portion cups of 2 oz. or less, if used for hot foods or foods requiring lids.
- Meat and fish trays for raw or butchered meat, including poultry, or fish that is sold from a refrigerator or similar retail appliance.
- Any food product pre-packaged by the manufacturer with a polystyrene foam food service product.
- Any other polystyrene foam food service product as determined necessary by the DEP.
Browse our NJ Bag Ban's Allowable Products
ALLOWABLE PAPER BAGS *Except by grocery stores equal to or larger than 2500 square feet*
ALLOWABLE POLY BAGS
ALLOWABLE DELI BAGS
ALLOWABLE LAUNDRY BAGS
WHAT IS A REUSABLE CARRYOUT BAG?
Under the law (P.L.2020 c.117), a reusable carryout bag is defined as one that:
- Made of polypropylene fabric, PET non-woven fabric, nylon, cloth, hemp product, or other washable fabric, and
- Has stitched handles (either thread or ultrasonic), and
- Designed and manufactured for at least 125 reuses.
EXEMPTIONS FROM THE BAN ON POLYSTYRENE FOAM FOOD SERVICE PRODUCTS (ALL EXPIRE MAY 4, 2024)
FOAM MEAT TRAYS
REQUIREMENTS FOR SINGLE-USE PLASTIC STRAWS:
Beginning on November 4, 2021, food service businesses shall only provide a single-use plastic straw to a customer upon request by the customer. Food service businesses are required to keep an adequate supply of single-use plastic straws. Stores may continue to sell packages of single-use plastic straws and provide/sell a beverage pre-packaged by the manufacturer with a single-use plastic straw, i.e., juice boxes.