A child-care organization in Des Plaines, Ill., is among the first sites in the U.S. using a foam-densifier machine to compact polystyrene products for easier recycling. The company that leases the machines promotes a nationwide foam-recycling program, with Des Plaines' Maryville Academy as one of the participants. Advocacy group No Foam Chicago, however, argues that even if the material, also known as Styrofoam, can be reused for insulation or crown molding, it cannot be recycled for food packaging, and new chemicals are needed to produce such products.

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