Economic Impact

The foam industry provides thousands of jobs and saves schools, businesses, consumers, and government agencies millions of dollars every year. Polystyrene foam benefits Miami by offering superior value, increased efficiency, and strong economic solutions for the city.
Foam recycling programs have saved some schools between 20-40% on material collection fees.[ii]
A Miami foam ban would hurt school districts. Many school districts use foam lunch trays because they can realize significant savings – a foam tray costs considerably less than a compostable tray. [i]

Recycled polystyrene material can be used to make things such as garden nursery flats, picture frames, rulers, architectural molding, and surfboards. Polystyrene manufacturers innovate the polystyrene recycling process for both food containers and product packaging. manufacturing plant

Foam products help Miami’s restaurants stay in business. Miami’s mom-and-pop restaurants are a cultural treasure, offering locals and tourists alike an authentic culinary experience. These restaurants operate on razor-thin profit margins and foam products offer them an affordable and effective food storage solution. A polystyrene foam ban could cost some of Miami’s restaurant owners up to tens of thousands of dollars per year.

Foam is far more economical than alternative materials. Food-grade polystyrene containers are generally two to three times less expensive than disposable paperboard products and reusable foodservice items. These strong foam containers provide excellent insulation at an economical price and allow Miami’s hardworking business owners to save money in a challenging economic climate.

[i] Kelly Puente, Recyclable Foam Trays a Cure for Long Beach Schools’ Headache, PRESS-TELEGRAM, May 19, 2011, available at

[ii] Franklin Associates, Ltd. Final Peer-Reviewed Report: Life Cycle Inventory of Polystyrene Foam, Bleached Paperboard, and Corrugated Paperboard Foodservice Products (Prepared for The Polystyrene Packaging Council, March 2006).