I was thinking today about the subtle changes I’ve made over time to my eating routine at work.
Last year I switched to using a mug instead of getting styrofoam cups from the cafeteria, and then to using metal silverware instead of disposable plasticware.
Recently I switched to a cloth napkin instead of paper ones.
Compared to what I was using before, just this year alone, I have saved:
* 200 styrofoam cups
* 100 plastic forks
* 100 plastic spoons
* 100 plastic knives
* 75 paper napkins
At home, I still use paper towels for napkins (though I have the half-size ones) – I have enough cloth napkins that I could use them at home, too.
When I have a frozen dinner, I recycle the cardboard box it came in, and rinse off and recycle the plastic tray the food was on.
It’s all worked out well so far, I actually find a mug, metal silverware, and a cloth napkin actually are more enjoyable to use… makes me think of the “Finer Things Club” from the show The Office, where they get together once a week and use real plates and silverware to eat lunch.
My only gripe is that the cloth napkins I got are cotton, when I wash them they get all wrinkly, and they are a bit rough. Maybe I’ll try some other fabrics.
I still throw out a styrofoam container every weekday, since that is what they serve the food in at the cafeteria. If you order something like a sandwich, you can get it in a plastic tray/basket, which they wash and reuse, but if you get something with sauce or dressing, then pretty much your only option is a styrofoam container.
I could bring in a container, but since I get a salad on most days, and salad is priced based on weight, using my own container would actually cost me more money, since it would weigh more than styrofoam.