Restaurant leftovers without excess waste

Here in the Bay Area, we have hundreds of wonderful restaurants, from inexpensive ethnic cafes to luxurious establishments good for those once-in-a-decade splurges. And often the servings are so generous we can’t eat them all.

The sensible thing to do is to take home the extras. But what kind of packaging to use? Typically the restaurant decides and not all of them are conscious about waste. Sometimes I’ve been given my take-home on a heavy-duty plate, covered in aluminum foil, and placed in a paper bag.

Not too sustainable! Saving the food from being wasted is good, but it means adding to paper, plastic, and aluminum waste. One solution is to order your meal one course at a time, so you can stop when you’re full. Another is for family and really good friends – share the take-home container and divvy it up at home!

A new campaign is tackling this issue. Takeout Without, started by Lisa Borden, gives tips and encouragement to help cut landfill waste. Do check it out! And an article by Annie Urban points out the shocking amount of earth’s materials we throw away. You’re an earth-friendly person, so if you haven’t already begun raising the consciousness of restaurants, now is a great time to start.

My personal solution is to have a plastic bag in my purse at all times, so I can simply tuck the leftovers into my own tiny packaging. (Obviously this doesn’t work with everything).

Plastic, you say? Reused, of course, from the cookie that comes in a little plastic bag. Try it! Enjoy the cookie and then keep the bag in your purse or pocket. You’ll be helping reduce waste and make our food system more sustainable.


One response to this post.

  1. i hate garbeg of any resturant


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