Photo by Toa Heftiba
Lunch often requires some packaging, whether you prefer homemade meals or buy at your favourite food place. While we enjoy our food, these meals should have little to no harmful impacts on the environment.
Unfortunately, a lot of our go-to food packages are made with plastics. Plastics contain a chemical composition that makes them non-biodegradable. This is a problem because we cannot get rid of plastic items. They end up in landfills and water bodies, posing a risk to both land and marine life.
If you pack your sandwiches using foil, that brings a different set of problems. Aluminium foil is made from metals that are both harmful to the environment (especially bees) and humans. These items have should have no place in our meals.
While these packaging options may seem like all we have, there are other environment-friendly alternatives. Here are some options to make your lunchtime eco-friendly.
How to Make Your Lunchtime Eco-Friendly
Bring your own cutlery
BYO is a growing trend to protect the environment. It means Bring Your Own to reduce the amount of waste generated from single-use items. We need to ignore (and eventually stop) the surplus of single-use plastics in the breakroom or food place.
You can buy cutlery set with a carry case for convenience. We hope that with time, people will regard cutlery the same way they regard watches, and never leave the house without them.
Cut down on takeouts
Most take out places use plastics to package and transport their food. Those plastic and styrofoam takeout boxes go straight into the trash once you’re done with them. Make an effort to pack homemade lunches, or buy from places with more responsible packaging.
If you absolutely have to get takeout, ensure that your favourite place uses recyclable boxes. Remember to clean out the box after your meal and place it in the recycle bin.
Use reusable packaging for your homemade lunches
Avoid Ziploc bags and styrofoam containers. Choose containers that can be reused for a long time. For example, you don’t need a plastic bag for your sandwiches. Simply cut them into smaller portions and place in a lunch container.
Bring your own water bottle
Plastic bottles make up a huge portion of waste. People use and dispose of them every day. Most times, one person is expected to drink more than a bottle of water per day. This makes water bottles an essential BYO.
Save money and protect the environment by cutting off plastic bottle use. Take your own bottle with you.
Don’t forget your straw
The final BYO item on our list is the straw. A study has estimated that up to 8 billion straws currently pollute our water bodies. Not only are they releasing toxic chemicals into our water, but they also endanger marine life. There’s evidence of marine animals being choked by/entangled in plastic. Plastic straws are small enough to cause real harm to these animals.
For a BYO, you need a sturdy straw that will last for a long time. It should also be biodegradable, so it doesn’t pose any danger when you eventually dispose of it. We recommend you check out our Havi eco-friendly straws for some options.
Fun, enjoyable, and responsible lunches are entirely possible. The little changes you make today will go a long way in protecting and preserving our planet.