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Old 07-26-2018, 08:08 PM
 
319 posts, read 151,558 times
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This is my first post in this forum, but I have posted consistently in other forums on City-Data.

Please be patient; I've got a good point.

I strive to recycle and to reduce the amount of trash that has to be buried/burned. I care what others do, because no man (or woman) is an island, but I focus on what I can do.

If you have ever picked up trash in a nature preserve (I did once for 3-4 days per week X six weeks), you know the problem of styrofoam. Though plastics 1-7 are generally recyclable, #5 -- styrofoam -- is usually excluded. Further, styrofoam tends to break up into pieces and therefore much more labor intense to pick up that a plastic cup.

I eat out approximately one day per week, sometimes in a restaurant, but I often prefer to just pick up the food and eat at home. Generally speaking, a meal cost around 10-12.00 or so, and consists of too many calories to consume in one day. So I generally eat 1/2 the meal one day, and warm up the other half for the next day.

If you take leftovers home, they are put in a styrofoam container. And if you pick up food at a restaurant (e.g., Chili's), again it is in a styrofoam container. I want to stop picking up food in a styrofoam container, because of the garbage.

I searched and finally found a solution: G.E.T. EC-01-1-JA Eco-Clamshell 3 Compartment Reusable Plastic Food Container.

This "meal size" food container, measuring 9" X 9" X 3.5" high, is made of plastic -- polypropylene. Polypropylene is a very durable and thick plastic. (Those clear plastic "disposable" food containers are NOT even in the same league.) Polypropylene is dish washer safe and microwave safe. Once you get your hands on it, I think you will see that it will last decades.

When I go out to eat in a restaurant, and will be taking 1/2 my meal home, I'll just carry it with me to the restaurant and ask the waitress to put my remaining food in the container. Not only that, but when I go to Chili's and order a burger to go, I will hand them the container and ask them kindly to put my burger and fries in the container. In the final analysis, it saves the restaurant one disposable styrofoam food container each time.

Lastly, this food container has one large compartment and two small compartments, so one can separate different courses of the meal.

But where do you buy just one (many restaurant suppliers sell these containers by the dozen)? Here you go: https://www.acemart.com/disposables/..._review_tabbed

Ace Mart Restaurant will sell you one container for 5.59. Now look, the shipping will cost more than the container, but this is a one-time purchase. Some of you might benefit from buying two or five or so, to give to other members of your family or friends. The item is pictured at this link:

https://www.acemart.com/media/catalo...etec-01-ja.jpg

And you will really like the container . . . it is seriously sturdy. Everytime I use it, it is one less styrofoam container in the landfill. If you are so inclined, please give it a try. Simple and quite affordable. Thanks for your time.
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Old 07-27-2018, 03:57 AM
 
Location: The Driftless Area, WI
2,777 posts, read 1,060,830 times
Reputation: 5981
Quote:
Originally Posted by townshend View Post

If you have ever picked up trash in a nature preserve (I did once for 3-4 days per week X six weeks...,


.


Community service sentences are a bummer, aren't they?


More seriously--- first off, landfills are not nearly the "problem" some naive people are led to believe. Documented on other threads here, landfills take up a minuscule part of our total land area, have virtually no leaching of toxins into the surrounding area, and are generally re-purposed after their useful life into natural & recreational land-use functions. One need not lose sleep over producing refuse.



Next, plastics are in fact "re-cyclable"--albeit on a geological time scale. Patience is a virtue in Nature, TreeHuggers.


Inconsiderate people handle their refuse inconsiderately. No doubt about that. You can educate but not legislate morality.


I look at it this way: When I lived in Cook County, IL, whose only saving grace is their 68,000 ac Forest Preserve District, we would trail ride and get lost in mature woods a mile to the closest road, and look up and see an occasional plastic bag waving like a flag sixty feet up an old oak tree. That was a bit disheartening until I realized that there are 6 million people in the Chicagoland met area probably being issued around 10 billion plastic bags a yr (2 million families, 10 shopping bags a week). Only seeing a handful of stray bags blowing around is a pretty good record.


In regards doggy bags--why not just use waxed paper--very inexpensive, convenient and made out of a totally renewable resource?
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Old 07-27-2018, 04:05 AM
 
Location: S. FL (hell for me-wife loves it)
3,172 posts, read 1,989,537 times
Reputation: 9667
I think it's a wonderful idea. Thanks for bringing up the topic. Styrofoam and plastic water bottles are high on my list to try to recycle.
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Old 07-27-2018, 01:19 PM
 
Location: too far from the sea
19,843 posts, read 18,867,840 times
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I think it's a good idea. I eat out maybe once a week and I don't like the styrofoam containers either.

A new place just opened and I have a new dilemma. It features fresh salads and big, beautiful sandwiches for take out. I get the sandwich (it's on long pieces of sourdough bread) and they first wrap it in aluminum foil and then place it into a plastic container. All that for a sandwich? Just so I can take it and eat it five minutes later at home?

I thought maybe they could use that paper (butcher's wrap?) that is/was used for meat in grocery stores. Or is that not recyclable? I think that, for them, it would be much cheaper and for us it would be less wasteful. But I don't know and I haven't suggested it to them yet. OR maybe there's some kind of reusable container that I could take when I go there. I guess I could just wash out their plastic container and keep using it.
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Old 07-27-2018, 04:03 PM
 
Location: East of the Mississippi and South of Bluegrass
4,454 posts, read 3,758,057 times
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OP, I think it's a great idea (and thank you for the link) however in my long lifetime I have worked in the food industry (which required an ANSI accredited Food Manager Certification) and I'm not sure how food establishments would feel about transferring their food into your container.

Just curious, if you have used your container in such a manner yet and if so, what have been your results thus far?
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Old 07-28-2018, 04:24 PM
 
319 posts, read 151,558 times
Reputation: 1276
Quote:
Originally Posted by HomeIsWhere... View Post
OP, I think it's a great idea (and thank you for the link) however in my long lifetime I have worked in the food industry (which required an ANSI accredited Food Manager Certification) and I'm not sure how food establishments would feel about transferring their food into your container.

Just curious, if you have used your container in such a manner yet and if so, what have been your results thus far?
Good question. I did go out and eat today, but the situation was atypical. It was a small Mexican restaurant in Montrose, CO, and after I ate half my meal, I simply pulled out my plastic container (from a cloth grocery bag) and used the fork to transfer the food. No big deal.

I would think that one could bring his/her container into any restaurant, and perform a similar transfer, rather than having the waitress take your plate of half-eaten food, transfer the leftovers to a styrofoam container, and bring the styrofoam container back to the customer.

I do think that if I were to go to Chili's, order a burger to go, and hand them my container and ask them to put the food in there, they would do it. I don't know when I am going back to Chili's (I try to eat at different places so I don't get tired of the same food when I go out to eat), but I will report back with my results.

I did walk about four miles this morning and finished picking up items people throw out of their vehicles. Not a huge amount, but apparently truck drivers (e.g., cement trucks, dump trucks, and logging trucks) enjoy drinking and driving, and throw empty Bud Light beer bottles, Coors cans, and these miniature liquor bottles out their windows along the edges of the road. This is out in an area of farmland, but this particular road is not flanked by fields, but undeveloped land, and I have seen such vehicles driving by during my walks.
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Old 07-28-2018, 06:35 PM
 
Location: Las Vegas
13,890 posts, read 25,331,777 times
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Our recycling people do take styrofoam and I put it in my recycle bin every week.
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Old 07-29-2018, 01:16 AM
 
Location: Sector 001
7,242 posts, read 6,471,018 times
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Napalm?
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Old 08-02-2018, 08:39 AM
 
319 posts, read 151,558 times
Reputation: 1276
Here is an excellent video about how the University of California Irvine has drastically reduced its carbon footprint: https://www.universityofcalifornia.edu/climate-lab

It also happens to feature a segment on reusable food containers, which is why I started this thread, but also has other great ideas as well. We can't just focus on recyling -- there are three RRRs -- reduce, recycle, and reuse.

We have to place as much if not more effort on reducing so that recycling doesn't get overloaded. When you reduce, then less trees are cut down, and less energy and resources are expended on recycling.

This video ties it all in with climate change. Don't "trash" this thread by taking it another direction. We should all work together on the 3 Rs. And the fact that things will all work out "in a geological" timeframe is irrelevant. I wasn't born in precambrian times, and neither were you.
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Old 08-02-2018, 09:27 AM
 
Location: East of the Mississippi and South of Bluegrass
4,454 posts, read 3,758,057 times
Reputation: 9612
Quote:
Originally Posted by townshend View Post
Good question. I did go out and eat today, but the situation was atypical. It was a small Mexican restaurant in Montrose, CO, and after I ate half my meal, I simply pulled out my plastic container (from a cloth grocery bag) and used the fork to transfer the food. No big deal.

I would think that one could bring his/her container into any restaurant, and perform a similar transfer, rather than having the waitress take your plate of half-eaten food, transfer the leftovers to a styrofoam container, and bring the styrofoam container back to the customer.

I do think that if I were to go to Chili's, order a burger to go, and hand them my container and ask them to put the food in there, they would do it. I don't know when I am going back to Chili's (I try to eat at different places so I don't get tired of the same food when I go out to eat), but I will report back with my results.
My concern is proper safety habits in order to decrease and eliminate foodborne illness which can be caused by a variety of circumstances. Although in my experience (some 30 odd years ago) I never had a customer ask for their food to be transferred to a container they had brought with them. Just out of curiosity I do look forward to hearing back on your experiences.
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