You now must request a straw with your soft drink in New Jersey

NEW YORK, USA - MAY 15, 2019: Counter in Starbucks cafe with Straws and sugar to pick up to go

(Bigstock)

If you want a straw with your drink in New Jersey, be sure to ask for one.

A restriction on single-use plastic straws went into effect Thursday as part of an overall law that aims to reduce plastic pollution in the state.

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Food service businesses, including restaurants and convenience stores, can now only provide single-use plastic straws with drinks when customers request one. Straws can still be purchased in packages and with pre-packaged drinks like juice boxes.

The law enabling the restriction, enacted in 2020, will ultimately ban single-use plastic bags and polystyrene food containers in the Garden State beginning in May 2022.

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“When we move beyond single-use plastics, we can reduce our reliance on the fossil fuels that create plastic, remove a source of litter from our communities, and protect wild and marine life from the harm of ingesting or becoming entangled in plastic products,” Environmental Protection Commissioner Shawn LaTourette said in a news release.

Two in three New Jersey residents supported a plastic bag ban in a Monmouth University Poll in 2019, but many backed away from that zeal when presented with how a ban would impact their shopping habits.

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