Yelp Adds “Plastic-Free Packaging” and More Eco-Friendly Business Attributes

To make it easier for consumers to find eco-friendly businesses, Yelp announced today it has partnered with Plastic Pollution Coalition to bring new searchable attributes onto the Yelp platform, including “Plastic-free packaging,” “Provides reusable tableware,” “Bring your own container allowed,” “Compostable containers available,” and “EV charging station available.”

Yelp users can find the sustainability attributes on business pages listed under the “Amenities and more” section on or the “Info” section in Yelp’s iOS or Android app, as well as highlighted on business listings in applicable search results.

The new Yelp sustainability attributes will allow people to more easily find eateries, bars, and cafes that are plastic free and support our values of thriving communities and a healthy, livable planet. We’re grateful Yelp is using its platform in this way and we’re excited the new attributes will help more sustainable businesses stand out for their green practices.

Dianna Cohen, Co-Founder and CEO of Plastic Pollution Coalition
Eco-friendly-Attributes-on-iOS_Restaurants Yelp

In addition to the new eco-friendly attributes, existing relevant attributes, such as “Bike parking” and “Vegan,” will also be searchable and highlighted in Yelp search results and business pages. 

Business owners can add the new attributes to their Yelp Page for free by logging into their Yelp for Business account and editing their “Business Information” section. Yelp is also surveying consumers to inform these attributes through the “Update the community” questions on Yelp business pages.

Helping Businesses Become More Sustainable

Yelp is also introducing a new Sustainability Resource Hub for businesses to help provide business owners with the tools they need to implement eco-friendly practices. The hub provides access to information from environmental nonprofits including Plastic Pollution Coalition, along with Coalition members and partners Upstream, Reusable LA, Surfrider Foundation, ReThink Disposable, and Food Rescue Hero.

Yelp’s collection of resources provides tools to help businesses effectively communicate to consumers how they’re giving back to the environment, learn how to adopt more sustainable business practices, and get inspired by the efforts of other local businesses like theirs. 

Plastic Pollution Coalition’s Plastic-Free Eateries Guide is another helpful resource for businesses looking to shift away from single-use plastic and toward better options.

Meeting Consumer Demand for More Eco-Friendly Options

Yelp reports that users are increasingly looking for more eco-friendly options on the platform, saying searches for “plant based” have increased an average of 56% each year from 2018 to 2021, and searches for “EV charging” have increased an average of 41% each year. 

Today more than ever, consumers are seeking businesses that prioritize sustainability to help reduce their environmental harm. Adopting more eco-friendly business practices and consumer habits have never been more important, which is why we’re working with Plastic Pollution Coalition and others to double down on our commitment to sustainability this Earth Day.

Akhil Kuduvalli Ramesh, VP of Consumer Product at Yelp

More resources for restaurant owners

Yelp for Restaurants highlights industry-focused content for restaurant owners interested in sustainability. With the launch of new eco-friendly attributes in April 2022, Yelp also hosted a virtual Town Hall featuring the Sustainable Development Goal 2 Advocacy Hub.

October 6, 2021 October 8, 2021

The 2021 Food Packaging Forum (FPF) Workshop will take place online in a virtual format on October 6-8, 2021, and will focus on Different perspectives on food contact materials: working together to make FCMs safer. Presentations and discussions will be split into three days of 2-hour sessions beginning at 15:00 Central European Summer Time (CEST). The sessions will feature a range of high-profile speakers from different areas of expertise and provide insights into the latest science and policy-making within the field, as well as discussing how stakeholders’ are working together to make food contact materials (FCMs) safer for everyone.

This annual workshop is a one-of-a-kind event in the field to learn about recent developments in science, business, advocacy, and regulation. This year’s workshop will be held in an online format that allows participants from anywhere to follow the speaker presentations, share questions live, and participate in discussions. This Food Packaging Forum event regularly brings together a diverse group of international stakeholders from government, industry, academia, civil society, and beyond to network with one another and share insights. To accommodate participation from across the globe, all of the presentations will also be recorded and made available to watch after the event.


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Public database lists over 12,200 chemicals that can be used in the manufacture of food contact materials, identifies 608 priority hazardous chemicals, highlights missing toxicity data for 29%

Zurich, Switzerland – Over 12,200 chemicals are potentially used to make food packaging and other food contact articles, according to a newly published, freely accessible inventory. The Food Contact Chemicals database (FCCdb) was compiled from over 50 governmental and industry sources and is global in scope. An accompanying peer-reviewed article highlights the key findings:

  • The FCCdb contains chemicals that can be used in the manufacture of diverse food contact materials, including widely used plastics, paper and board, metals, and glass, as well as less known materials such as printing inks, silicones, textiles, and adhesives.
  • 12,285 distinct food contact chemicals (FCCs) are potentially used in the manufacture of food contact materials and articles.
  • 71% of these substances have publicly available toxicity data, while the remainder lack openly accessible toxicity data.
  • 608 food contact chemicals were identified as most hazardous substances and thus high-priority candidates for substitution in food contact material manufacturing.

The study was published on November 30, 2020 as open access article in the journal Environment International and on the same day the updated version of the FCCdb will be released on the Zenodo platform.

“This database is a much-needed, freely available resource describing the universe of food contact chemicals,” says Jane Muncke, managing director of the Food Packaging Forum and co-author of the study. “Chemical exposure from food contact articles like packaging must be systematically addressed, and any hazardous substances removed – and not replaced with other, less well studied chemicals that turn out to be regrettable substitutions, like BPS that replaced BPA. Getting the toxics out is essential as society moves toward a circular economy and increases the use of recycled or alternative materials. This database enables stakeholders to tackle this task in a systematic way.”

Food contact chemicals (FCCs) have previously been highlighted as being of concern for human health. While there is a great amount of information for some of the most well studied FCCs, such as bisphenol A (BPA) and phthalates, thousands of reported FCCs lack openly available data on their hazardous properties and/or level of human exposure – but these are critical data for determining human health risks. The FCCdb is a valuable resource that can be used by all stakeholders to identify and address such knowledge gaps and to support further research targeting the safety of food contact materials.

Join our global Coalition.

Scientists from around the world agree – the chemicals in plastic packaging are contaminating our food and putting our health, particularly the health of our children, at risk. 

An unprecedented report documenting over 1,000 peer-reviewed studies on the subject, called  Impacts of Food Contact Chemicals on Human Health: A Consensus Statement has been published in the peer-reviewed journal, Environmental Health, by the Food Packaging Forum and other scientific advisors on March 3.

This statement could not be clearer: single-use packaging isn’t just a pollution crisis– it’s a public health threat.

Plastic Pollution Coalition and the Break Free From Plastic movement join with public health advocates around the globe to call on lawmakers to:

  1. ensure full disclosure and traceability of chemicals used in packaging throughout the supply chain;

  2. restrict the use of hazardous chemicals in food packaging (and products), and prevent regrettable substitutions, and

  3. adopt policies that support the transition towards safe, reusable, and refillable packaging.

Organizations can sign on in support here.

Join our global Coalition.