Brussels has a solution to make takeout meals environmentally friendly

In an effort to reduce the amount of trash contributing to the city’s carbon footprint, the people of Brussels have started an initiative to replace takeout food packages with reusable containers.

When Americans get takeout from restaurants, the food often comes in Styrofoam containers or some kind of plastic or cardboard that is used just one time and discarded. The same can be said of many developed nations.

While some people recycle, not everyone does. As a result, the waste from takeout food alone is massive and is contributing to the carbon footprint that is causing the acceleration of climate change around the world.

In Brussels, the capital of Belgium, a new website known as Tiffin is hoping to change that by convincing people to purchase a steel container they can bring to restaurants with them so their food can be stored in it instead of wasteful packaging that piles up in landfills or is burned.

According to Tiffin:

In Brussels, restaurants produce 32,000 tons of waste every year, of which one third is attributable to packaging waste. These wastes, which have an impact on the environment and represent a cost to society, should not stop growing as the number of meals taken away from home increases each year and the fast food “take away” is on the rise.

Our mission is to reduce the impact of food packaging waste by 1.5 tons per year per 1000 members (waste which, if incinerated, would have emitted 4 tons of CO2 into the atmosphere), and to make a savings of 20,000 euros in the purchase of jetable containers, which can be better invested in sustainable restoration. Tiffin also aims to rethink the lunch experience by introducing its members to a small quality Brussels restaurant, in the form of takeaway dishes on a fashion – eco-responsible.

If enough people sign up for the project, it could make a huge difference because restaurants could also get with the program. As further incentive, the website offers a 5 percent discount for all members.

Fighting climate change will take major lifestyle changes, but this one is easy to accomplish with little effort. We should all purchase reusable containers to use for transporting takeout food from restaurants, and when that’s not possible, recycle the packaging instead of just throwing it in the trash.

Brussels is clearly taking action, because like many cities around the world, its carbon footprint is too high.

Using sustainable containers that can be reused over and over again is a big idea that should be copied everywhere.

Featured Image: Tiffin

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Stephen D. Foster Jr.

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