Preparing lunches is something many of us do almost every day. Whether it be your own work lunch or meals for the entire family to keep them full and energized throughout their day, this amount of to-go lunches can add up to a lot of unnecessary waste. There are, however, many ways you can make your lunches with waste in mind, from the beginning of the process to the end.
First, before cooking a single thing, there are some key changes that we can make in our typical habits. For example, choose ingredients from the bulk bins wherever possible. These items come with less packaging waste and you can bring your own containers from home to transport and store them in, just make sure to account for the weight of the container at the checkout.
What you use to take your lunch in is also an important factor in keeping waste low. Ditch the disposable plastic sandwich and snack bags for reusable options like stainless steel or glass containers. The same goes for beverages, switch to reusable travel mugs and water bottles instead of their disposable counterparts.
In terms of food waste, try to find creative alternatives for your leftovers. Whether it be using left over vegetables in a soup or re-purposing a meal into a sandwich or wrap for another snack, there are so many ways we can cut back on waste.
Finally, when you’re all finished eating, look at the different ways to dispose of the components of your meal. Composting the items you won’t use as leftovers and recycling any containers used are easy and impactful ways of reducing waste.
These tips represent just a few things we can all do to make our lunches light on waste and next time you’re packing a lunch, challenge yourself to pack waste-free.