Plastic bags are ruining the planet. Among other things, of course, but they are a big colporate. These things used to be (and still are in some places) everywhere! The worst part is they take thousands of years to decompose. It is our responsibility to clean up the earth. Reducing our plastic intake is just one way we can help save the earth.
At first, the initiative was to recycle them. Recycling was marketed as if it worked 100% of the time. We had the mentality that every item we put in the recycling box would go to a facility, be successfully recycled, and would come back as another product. In theory this is great! Unfortunately, it just is not the case. The majority of materials placed in recycling bins are rejected and get thrown into a landfill anyways.
Why would a material get rejected? Mostly because of contaminants with food and other non-recyclable products. The biggest source of plastic bags not getting recycled are plastic bags from carry-out restaurants. Restaurants are notorious for overusing plastic when they definitely do not need to be. Sometimes they wrap containers in a brown paper bag and then still use two plastic bags! It is so wasteful and unnecessary to have just one plastic bag let alone two!
The solution to helping restaurants become more conscious of their plastic use is by not even using plastic at all! Okay, that is kind of unrealistic so they should consider reusing what they already have in their restaurants. Every restaurant gets multiple shipments in a week of produce and other materials needed for their food. Instead of just tossing those shipping boxes the restaurant could reuse them to package their to-go orders. Obviously the boxes could not be the huge oversized ones, but smaller packages would work just fine. Lots of produce and grains usually arrive in smaller packages, anyways.
I’m sure there would not be enough shipping boxes for every single order. But even if it covered even just a day’s worth of orders it would be great how much waste they reduced! The boxes could even be reused at home as well.
It is simple changes like this that anybody can be a part of to help save the earth. Little things will ultimately add up. If all restaurants start adopting this model I could not imagine the change we would start to see in just one year.