Paper goods usually refers to items made of paper other than paper used for writing. They include plates, cups, napkins.
Paper goods are usually used once and then thrown out. They are not normally sturdy enough for washing and re-use. Since they are made of paper, they are generally biodegradable. However, sometimes they are coated with materials that make them less biodegradable. Also, sometimes the term is used more generally to refer to disposable items that may be made of other materials, like plastic.
The advantage of using paper goods is that you don't have to do as much cleaning before or after using them. This can be especially useful when hosting a large event. While extra dishes could be bought or rented, it's often easier to buy paper goods when the need is temporary. Another advantage is that they are not breakable.
Disadvanages of using paper goods include the fact that they create a larger burden on Earth's resources. They are often not as sturdy as reusable dishes and utensils.
Paper goods can also be used for other purposes. With a paper plate, some coloring materials, scissors and a piece of string, a child can be amused for quite awhile making a mask.
When do you think paper goods should be used instead of items made of other materials?