Back-to-School Green Tips: Lunches

Green Tips | August 18, 2021

With back-to-school right around the corner, we hope you’ll take advantage of this new beginning to instill a few eco-friendly practices into your school routine. There are plenty of little things that you can do for yourself or family members, especially when it comes to school lunches. Here are some simple ways to make school lunches as eco-friendly as possible:

Reusable lunchbox: Not only can reusable lunch boxes spark joy with their fun designs, they certainly create less waste than sending your student with a paper bag or plastic bag lunch. Have an old lunch box your student has “outgrown”? Donate it to a friend or a child in need!

Opt for reusable utensils: Bamboo or steel forks, spoons, and knives are a great way to cut down on plastic and packaging. They also come in fun colors and designs, to make eating lunch even more enjoyable!

Consider non-plastic containers: Although plastic is reusable, extracting raw materials to make these products causes environmental harm. Consider using glass or stainless steel containers for food (which fortunately don’t stain from tomato sauce or spices!) For sandwiches and snacks, beeswax paper or sealable silicone bags are great alternatives. Have fun with it! There are so many options to choose from. 

Buy local: Purchasing fruits and vegetables from local businesses could help you use less packaging and eliminate the need for shipping, which emits quite a lot of carbon dioxide in the process. Buying local also supports the local economy among other benefits

Use materials that will last: Cloth napkins and reusable straws are items that can be used for a long time if they’re taken care of properly. Your student may enjoy sipping their drink through a straw more than sipping without one, especially a curly one!

Try vegetarian options: Whether it’s incorporating Meatless Mondays into your schedule or trying out Beyond Burgers, there are vegetarian meals for even the pickiest of eaters. A plant-based diet, according to the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, is better for the environment and your health. 

These are just a few of the ways you can enjoy an eco-friendly lunch as we prepare to go back to school. Try out a few of these tips or make a change that works for you and your family to help reduce waste and make the planet a better place!

By: Kerry Ellis

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