Take-out containers are a staple of American life. Whether getting food to go from your favorite restaurant or packing up leftovers, these handy containers have become an indispensable part of our lives. But have you ever stopped to consider just how much waste is generated by take-out containers?
The Most Commonly Used Package Service Containers In America
The most common takeaway containers used in America are plastic, paperboard, and foam. The sizes of these containers vary depending on the type and quantity of food they are intended to hold. Common sizes include one-portion containers, two-portion containers, four-portion containers, six-portion containers, and twelve-portion containers. Other sizes and shapes may be available depending on the supplier.
How Harmful are Takeout Containers to the Environment?
In the United States, take-out containers account for nearly 50 billion pieces of trash every year. That’s more than three times the amount of garbage generated by plastic bags. And most of that waste isn’t recycled. Many of the take-out containers made from foam are non-biodegradable and can remain in landfills for hundreds of years. It’s estimated that foam products make up about 30 percent of all litter collected in cities and streets.
Studies for Reducing Packaging Waste
Fortunately, there are positive steps being taken to address this problem. Many cities are enacting ordinances to reduce take-out container waste. For example, Seattle has banned restaurants from using Styrofoam containers for to-go orders. Other cities, such as Los Angeles and San Francisco, have passed ordinances mandating restaurants to use recyclable takeaway containers.
Consumers can also help reduce take-out container waste by making small changes. Instead of opting for single-use containers, bringing reusable containers to the restaurant can be an easy way to cut down on waste. Doing so helps reduce the burden on our planet, while also helping to preserve resources for future generations.
What Are Recyclable Packaging Compatible With Food?
Recyclable plastic packaging compatible with food includes PET (polyethylene terephthalate) containers, HDPE (high-density polyethylene) containers and PP (polypropylene) containers. Other materials such as bioplastics, compostable plastics and PLA (polylactic acid) are also becoming increasingly popular for food packaging.
The takeaway? Next time you’re picking up some food to go, keep the environment in mind and opt for an eco-friendly solution.