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Photographs by Ephemia Nicolakis

Polystyrene foam, or more commonly known as Styrofoam™, may seem lightweight and harmless, but it is in fact just as harmful as other plastics. During processing and development, over 50 chemical byproducts are released into the air, water, and communities surrounding these facilities. Styrene is believed to be a carcinogen (cancer-causing), as it potentially leaches from the Styrofoam™ when heated. Additionally, putting hot foods in Styrofoam™ is just as harmful.

Some of the most commonly used packaging materials at large events are made of styrofoam such as cups, plates and bowls, and to-go containers. Styrofoam is mainly used for its ability to retain the temperature heat of food products.


Luckily, there are a number of effective alternatives over styrofoam. Researching alternatives to the widely-used products already at our parishes can be time consuming - that’s why we have done it all for you! The chart below contains a list of companies which sell sustainable alternatives to styrofoam products.

WebStaurant Store

Paper/biodegradable/compostable products takeout containers available


Bio & Chic

Eco-friendly disposable tableware made of bamboo, cornstarch, paper, etc.


Restaurant Supply

Biodegradable to-go food containers.

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