Sunnyvale, CA Ban on Chlorofluorocarbon-Processed Food Packaging

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Sunnyvale, CA, US

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Type: Municipal Code

Status: Adopted via ordinance

Source File:



8.18.010. Findings and purpose.

(a) Available scientific evidence indicates a strong probability that the family of substances known as chlorofluorocarbons (“CFCs”), when discharged into the atmosphere, degrade the earth’s protective layer of ozone, allowing increased amounts of ultraviolet radiation to penetrate the atmosphere, posing an acute and immediate danger to human health, life and the environment. Available scientific evidence indicates the strong possibility that the resulting increase in ultraviolet radiation may already have caused an increase in the incidence of skin cancers and other serious illnesses.

(b) One source of the CFCs currently being released into the atmosphere is the use of these substances as blowing agents in the manufacture of some of the polystyrene foam packaging products used in the food services industry. There are substitutes for these products currently available which do not use CFCs in their manufacture.

(c) The people and the city of Sunnyvale support international, federal and state bans on all uses of CFCs not deemed absolutely essential. Until such policies become law, responsible action to reduce release of CFCs into the atmosphere, and to increase the public awareness of the danger posed by the use of these substances, must be undertaken at the local level.

(d) It is the intent of the city of Sunnyvale to reduce the amount of CFC-processed food packaging products purchased and used within and by the city and people of Sunnyvale, in order to reduce, to the greatest extent possible, the health hazards created by the release of CFCs into the atmosphere.

8.18.020. Definitions.
The following words and phrases, whenever used in this chapter, shall be construed as defined in this section:

(1) “Chlorofluorocarbons” (“CFCs”) means the family of chemical substances containing carbon, fluorine and chlorine and having no hydrogen atoms and no double bonds.

(2) “CFC-processed food packaging” means food packaging which uses chlorofluorocarbons as blowing agents in its manufacture.

(3) “Customer” means anyone purchasing food or beverages from a restaurant or retail food vendor.

(4) “Food packaging” means all bags, sacks, wrapping, boxes, containers, bowls, plates, trays, cartons, cups, straws or lids which are not intended for reuse, on or in which any foods or beverages are placed or packaged on a restaurant’s or retail food vendor’s premises.

(5) “Prepared food” means beverages and foods which are prepared on the vendor’s premises by cooking, chopping, slicing, mixing, freezing, squeezing or otherwise, and which require no further preparation to be consumed. Prepared food does not include any raw uncooked meat product or fruits or vegetables which are not chopped, squeezed, mixed or otherwise processed in some fashion.

(6) “Restaurant” means any establishment located within the city of Sunnyvale, selling prepared food to be eaten on or about its premises by customers, including but not limited to the following: coffee shop, short-order cafe, luncheonette, tavern, bar, sandwich stand, soda fountain, school lunch room, cafeteria or delicatessen. “Restaurant” also includes sidewalk and other outdoor facilities.

(7) “Retail food vendor” means any store, shop, sales outlet, caterer, lunch truck, pushcart vendor or other business including a grocery store or a delicatessen, other than a restaurant, located within the city of Sunnyvale, which provides or sells takeout food.

(8) “Supplier” means anyone supplying food packaging to a restaurant or retail food vendor within the city of Sunnyvale.

(9) “Takeout food” means prepared foods or beverages requiring no further preparation to be consumed and which may be purchased in order to be consumed off the retail food vendor’s premises.

8.18.030. Prohibition on the use of chlorofluorocarbon-processed food packaging.
No retail food vendor or restaurant located or doing business in the city of Sunnyvale shall purchase, obtain, keep, sell, distribute or provide to customers or otherwise use in its business, any CFC-processed food packaging, except as provided in Section 8.18.050.

8.18.040. Food packaging—Proof of compliance.

(a) Every restaurant and every retail food vendor shall show proof of compliance with Section 8.18.030 of this code by one of the following means: (1) entering into a contract with its suppliers, which provides that the supplier will supply only food packaging not manufactured with CFCs or (2) obtaining a written statement from its suppliers, which provides that the supplier will supply only food packaging not manufactured with CFCs, or (3) obtaining a written statement from the supplier on each invoice for food packaging that the food packaging invoiced was not CFC-processed.

(b) It shall be unlawful for any supplier to make a false statement regarding use or non-use of CFCs in the manufacture of any food packaging supplied to any retail food vendor or restaurant.

(c) Restaurants and retail food vendors shall retain copies of each contract or written statement required by this section and shall make them available for inspection by the city manager or his/her designated representative upon request. Invoices and contracts required by this section shall be retained for a period of one year. It shall be unlawful for anyone having custody of such documents to fail or refuse to produce such documents upon request by the city manager or his/her representative during normal business hours.

8.18.050. Exceptions.
Food packaging required to be paid for or shipped prior to September 1, 1990, is exempt from the provisions of this chapter.

8.18.060. City purchases of CFCs prohibited.
The city of Sunnyvale shall not purchase any CFC-processed food packaging, nor shall any city-sponsored event utilize such packaging.

8.18.070. Penalties.

(a) Anyone violating or failing to comply with any of the requirements of this chapter shall be guilty of an infraction, upon conviction shall be punishable as set forth in Chapter 1.04 of this code.

(b) The city attorney may seek legal, injunctive or other equitable relief to enforce this chapter.

(c) The remedies and penalties provided in this section are cumulative and not exclusive.