Plastic accounts for about 11 percent of all U.S solid waste. Non-reusable dishes, cutlery, and food containers — usually Styrofoam and other hard-to-recycle plastics — go to landfills and incinerators and have ongoing associated costs for purchasing and waste disposal. Providing reusable items with all food and beverage services eliminates the need for plastic ware and disposable food containers. Reusable alternatives include ceramic dishes, durable plastic plates, glass cups, and silverware.
Non-disposable dishes and silverware can be reused for years and save money by eliminating the need to buy disposable utensils and food containers. Although they may cost more initially, savings will accumulate over time until the investment has paid for itself. Using non-disposable items also keeps waste out of the landfill and harmful pollutants out of the air when waste is incinerated. Many guests also prefer durable food service dishes and utensils because they impart a sense of superior quality.
Challenge Participants Currently Adopting This Practice
Financing Options, Incentives, And Rebates
Boston Area Businesses Using Reusable Items for Food and Beverage Services
A Small Sample of Providers around Boston
- Green Restaurant Association: Find Products
- Green Eco Services
- RestaurantWare: Eco-Friendly Tableware
In The News
- “Brookline Town Meeting bans Styrofoam coffee, takeout containers” Boston.com, Nov 2012
- “The Fireplace: Boston’s Leading Eco-Friendly Restaurant” Eco News Network, Mar 2011
- “Our foam cups runneth over” Boston.com, Nov 2010
- “Boston’s ‘Green’ Dining Scene” The Wall Street Journal, July 2008