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The food service industry is slowly moving away from single-use plastic cups, cutlery, containers, and more. With these tips and tricks, you can avoid plastic when eating out altogether.

What you can do

Avoid single-use plastic products when eating out

How you can do it

Dining in
  • Decline or avoid buying items served in styrofoam packaging.
  • Choose eateries that serve their food in biodegradable containers (like paper or other natural fiber composites).
  • Choose eateries that use washable dishes and utensils instead of disposable service items.
  • If you choose to eat somewhere that uses disposable service items, bring your own with you. Even reusing plastic items is better than using disposable utensils and containers.
  • Decline straws and plastic lids when ordering a drink.
Ordering out
  • Ask the eatery to package your food in a container you bring with you when you pick up your order.
  • Take your time and dine in if that’s the only way to avoid using plastic packaging.
  • Decline straws, plastic lids, and plastic utensils.
Drinks on the go
  • Bring your own reusable travel mug or cup.
  • Decline the plastic lid if you forget your reusable container.
  • You can often have your coffee served in a ceramic cup or mug to drink on the spot.
Bakery items
  • Bakeries often package their items in paper bags, but it is still preferable to bring your own bag.
Ice cream parlors
  • Order your ice cream in a cone to avoid the plastic spoon and disposable cup.
  • Choose ice cream parlors that serve their ice cream in paper cups instead of styrofoam.
  • Bring your own container if you intend to buy ice cream to take home.

The impact

Single-use plastics make up 40% of the plastic produced globally, and the food service industry is a large contributor to this. Remember that every time you avoid single-use plastic items when eating out, you’re helping to reduce that.

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