Let’s face it, buying lunch gets old, expensive, and wasteful of natural resources. I’ve been packing my lunch three to four days a week for the last couple of years – it’s been good both for my wallet and my waistline; however, sometimes it generates as much trash as buying (if not more). Here are some easy tips for how to make your lunch more environmentally friendly:
- Pack your sandwich (or salad) in a reusable plastic container. If you can get away with it, don’t wash the container every day (PB&J isn’t that messy).
- Make your lunch at work. My desk neighbor keeps a jar of PB in her drawer and makes a sandwich on toast daily…delicious, hot, fresh, and reduces waste.
- Buy snacks in bulk and pack in reusable containers – and avoid single-serving packages. My personal favorite is homemade trail mix – you get the real M&Ms and save the planet at the same time!
- Pack fresh whole fruit. Apples, oranges, and bananas don’t require any packaging.
- Bring drinks in reusable containers like a thermos, nalgene container, or travel mug, or in recyclable ones like a can, or glass or plastic bottle.
- If you’re having soup or salad, use washable, reusable silverware.
- If you’re feeling very fancy, pack cloth napkins…of course, this means remembering to take them home and wash them.
Here’s an example of an Australian school campaign for “rubbish-free lunch”: http://www.education.vic.gov.au/about/events/rubbishfree/about.htm