The frames are wax-coated plastic.
Plastic frames need to be prepped in the following way.
1. Open package and air them out asap after arrival, the longer the airing out period the better. Buy in the fall for spring use.
2. Coat wax foundation sheets will an additional layer or 2 of bess wax, they manufacturers are cheap with the wax and it inhibits the bees to the point of refusing to use the plastic foundation.
3. Spray the plastic foundation with syrup when installing the bees in the hive. This will cause the bees to consume the syrup off the wax and they will be more willing to immediately use the syrup to build comb.
4. If unable to do #1 then use a masking agent to cover the plastic smell, vanilla is one of the best masking agents I've found. It works when combining bees and installing queens too.