Waste-Free Lunch

The Waste-free Lunch
The Waste-free Lunch
Getting out of the house in the morning can be a challenge to say the least. Waking the kids, getting the young ones dressed, making breakfast, and not to mention packing everyone’s lunch can at times seem like an overwhelming task. Grabbing those individually-portioned, pre-packaged items for the lunchboxes is a tempting option. But those packaged goods can be costly to our wallets, the planet, and even our bodies. This waste-free lunch guide details some of the benefits that can be realized by providing a child with a waste-free lunch​.
True
What is a waste-free lunch?
What is a waste-free lunch?

​The average lunch can easily produce a significant pile of trash between the boxes, Ziploc bags, disposable utensils, plastic wrap, and handfuls of napkins. Regardless of how healthy the food may or may not be, it can betray the shared mission of reducing waste.

In a waste-free lunch everything used is able to be eaten, reused, recycled, or composted. A waste-free lunch would include items like a reusable lunch bag/box, reusable sandwich container, durable cutlery, a refillable bottle, and a cloth napkin. Apple cores or banana peels can be tossed in the compost. The best way to reduce trash is say “NO” to generating it in the first place.

False
Benefits of a waste-free lunch
Benefits of a waste-free lunch

​Save money! A waste-free lunch program can potentially save a significant amount of money, especially in the long run. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), packing a waste-free lunch saves an average student $250 per (nine-month) school year.

Less need for landfills! The EPA estimates that a waste-free lunch saves an average student 67 pounds of trash every school year. If every student in Alachua County packed a waste-free lunch for the school year, almost 2,000,000 pounds−or 1,000 tons−of trash could potentially be saved from the landfill. 

Health is wealth! Many plastic packages and bottles contain synthetic chemicals that may be harmful to human health such as the bisphenol A (BPA). BPA is linked to numerous health effects including hormone imbalance, behavioral issues, and even obesity. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that 93 percent of people had detectable levels of BPA in their urine.

False
Packing a waste-free lunch is easy! Take a look at these tips below.
Packing a waste-free lunch is easy! Take a look at these tips below.
  • Try packing lunches the night before. Mornings will be that much easier.
  • Make a bit extra for dinner and portion out leftovers during cleanup.
  • Pre-portion snacks, nuts, and dried fruit into their reusable container, then simply grab and go.
  • Pack fresh fruit! It comes in its own compostable packaging.
  • Sandwich boxes (stainless steel or BPA-free plastic) or cotton snack bags are a great waste-free option.
  • Last step! Throw in the reusable cutlery and washable napkin
False
Additonal Information
Additonal Information

​For additional waste reduction tips, recommendations, or other information, please contact Alachua County’s Office of Waste Alternatives at 352-338-3233, or visit www.facebook.com/AlachuaCountyRecycles​

False
​​ 

Contact

  • Office of Waste Alternatives
  • 5620 N.W. 120th Lane
  • Gainesville, FL 32653
  • Phone: 352-374-5213
  • TDD/TTY users, please call 711 (Florida Relay Service)
  • Office Hours
    Monday - Thursday
    7:00am-5:30pm

​​

Follow Us

  • Facebook
  • twitter
  • YouTube
  • Pinterest
​​​

​​

​​​​​​​​