zero waste wednesday

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^^^ my travel bag  i carry in my purse for use when disposables are present ^^^

do you know the number one largest component of american trash? one-time-use restaurant ware. think to-go coffee cups, napkins, disposable fast food wrappings, plastic drink cups, straws, paper linings for tables and trays, take out containers etc. etc. etc.

once you really start to think about it, it gets really scary. just one trip to restaurant can yield up to 20 pieces of trash that were used only once…that were precious resources…and more precious resources were used to get them to your table.

this is been an area of my life that i’ve desired to work on for a while. of course the easiest and our number one way of solving this {mostly for financial reasons} was to curb eating out. making meals at home is healthier for your wallet, waistline and the planet.

but sometimes eating out is unavoidable or rather just plain desirable. i’ve come up with a few strategies for reducing our waste when we choose to eat out. I’ll be sharing them here for this series. here is my first:

1. opt for restaurants that use real napkins & silverware when possible. if you have to choose between going to someplace like steak n shake or burger king for a burger then choose steak n shake. they use real silver ware, reusable cups and some still have cloth napkins. we try to eat places with better quality food but hey, you need these tips when road trips are involved. and maybe plan ahead and research quality food choices ahead of time for road trips. i am not actually very good at this but i know people who do. or skip this altogether by packing a cooler of quality food before you start.

another option is to make a small pack to carry around with you. i regularly carry a few kerchiefs with me so i just added a couples sets of silverware. this goes where I go and we’ve used them several times when some of our favorite eats only offer disposables.

making an effort to be more zero-waste, a little bit at a time.

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One thought on “zero waste wednesday

  1. I sure wish we had packed our own cutlery the time Eileen took us to eat Ethiopian in DC!

    I have started packing a real spoon with my yogurt when I sub….saving a trip to cafeteria for a plastic one and avoiding the vending and junk they now make available to kids right in the dining room. And I fill several insulated tumblers with water from my own fridge instead of buying a bottle for a dollar on site. Every single food served on the lunch line is in either paper, plastic or foil. No longer is the divided tray used to scoop foods right out of serving dish on to kid’s trays. (The ketchup/mustard are in pump with no dispenser cups.) AND trash cans are filled to the brim all over the dining room by end of each lunch requiring custodial to switch them. The jobs in the lunchroom are minimum pay, no benefits, just a few hours a day yet the money goes toward individually packaged everything creating more waste and increased cost. It probably does make the lines move faster so the kids are fed more quickly. Yet they seem to have a good deal of time to sit and chat later in their lunch time.

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