New York City bans Styrofoam starting today

Possessing, selling or offering Styrofoam products at New York City's food service establishments, stores and manufacturers was banned as of midnight Wednesday.

Across the five boroughs, Styrofoam products such as trays, cups, plates, clamshell containers and packing peanuts are now banned, according to a law passed in December 2013. That law says fines for violations of ban can't be collected for six months, until January 2016, although the city has said businesses would get warnings instead of fines for the first year the ban is in place.

Non-profits and small businesses with less than $500,000 in annual revenue can apply for hardship exemptions if they can prove purchasing alternative products would create undue financial hardship.

In January, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced the ban would begin July 1.