Posted by Dan Barry on

The sustainability tip that's been right in front of you your whole life

The lunchbox might just be the greatest thing since sliced bread. 

That's right. Bringing your lunch to work or sending it with your little ones every day will not only save you money but also help save the planet. Who knew you were so woke as a kid?

Get back to your glory days with these tips.

First, you really need to evaluate what you're carrying your food in. (Is it as cool as my OG Gunsmoke lunchbox??) While I doubt it, all that really matters is that whatever you use to carry your lunch isn't disposable. The old tin lunch boxes (they are definitely making a comeback) are a great option, or cloth bags or soft-sided coolers work great. Whatever fits your fancy. 

Then take a look at what you're putting in your lunch box. (No, we're still not to the food part yet.) Plastic containers and sandwich bags are bad for the environment (and your food). Plastic contains BPAs that leach into your food when it's reused or heated up, which really can't be great for your insides. Oh, and did I mention it takes 450 years for plastic to decompose? 

Instead, choose compostable brown paper or a cloth sandwich bag to wrap your sammies and look for containers that serve as an alternative to plastic. Stainless steel is a good option for kids (and the uncoordinated) because it won't break or bust if dropped. Look for food grade stainless steel 18/8 and #304 (not aluminum - that's an imposter that also isn't great for you). If you're brave, glass containers work well too.

And finally, evaluate what you're putting in your containers in your lunch box. Get in on the ugly produce movement, shop at your local farmers market and check labels for natural products at the store. 



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