What are some alternatives to using Styrofoam food and drink containers?

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  1. janshares profile image96
    jansharesposted 2 years ago

    What are some alternatives to using Styrofoam food and drink containers?

    The new law banning the use of Styrofoam products by businesses and non-profits in Washington, DC goes into effect Jan 1st. Has anyone used alternative products (in bulk)? How do the costs differ? What about quality and durability for hot food and drink? We have to make a decision on how we will continue to feed the homeless at my church legally, without it being cost-prohibitive.

  2. ecogranny profile image83
    ecogrannyposted 2 years ago

    How about returning to an industrial dish washer, stainless steel food trays and tableware and ceramic cups and mugs? Use the increased need for labor, if any, as a job resource for other non-profits helping homeless folks out of poverty. I suspect you'll come close to breaking even in operating costs, given you'll no longer be purchasing thousands of one-use items each week--and paying for their trash pickup and hauling.

    1. janshares profile image96
      jansharesposted 2 years agoin reply to this

      Hmm. That's an idea, Kathryn. Never thought of that one. The church has an industrial dish washer, seen it used twice in the 30 years. There was a set of ceramic plates, cups, and saucers that I believe were given away, silverware is still there.

  3. RTalloni profile image91
    RTalloniposted 2 years ago

    I've thought about this topic off and on because I saw the response of one of my father's cancer doctors to seeing styrofoam coffee cups being used in their lobby. Large organizations use them freely--schools, churches, businesses, hospitals--but I no longer eat or drink from them.  That said, paper alternatives might be a viable option in the shelter, though KG's response on going back to washing dishes could be a useful alternative.

    1. janshares profile image96
      jansharesposted 2 years agoin reply to this

      I do think paper is the easiest immediate alternative until we decide on Kathryn's very green idea. Thanks for answering, RTalloni.

  4. Jackie Lynnley profile image89
    Jackie Lynnleyposted 2 years ago

    You could use the plastic cups that are used for hot drinks and although those would be pricier you could have these homeless hang onto them for refills and if that is not allowed take them back yourself and run through a dishwasher? These would be great to serve them hot drinks and soups in. Great deed, God bless you, Happy New Year and hope you had a Merry Christmas!

    1. janshares profile image96
      jansharesposted 2 years agoin reply to this

      Thanks, Jackie. Happy New Year to you, too. I will look for the plastic cups for hot drinks. It looks like the dish washer will eventually figure into our solution.

  5. Express10 profile image88
    Express10posted 2 years ago

    Maybe you should to look into paper or plastic cups. There are office supply stores and even party stores that will give you a discount just for the asking. At this time of year you may get a huge discount by buying Christmas and other out of season party dinner ware. Some companies selling these products may even go above and beyond for a good cause, it doesn't hurt to explain your mission and ask if they can give you a discount.

    1. janshares profile image96
      jansharesposted 2 years agoin reply to this

      Great idea, Express10. I hadn't thought of the out of season product angle as a way to start out. Asking companies for discounts or even donations is great, too. Thanks so much.

  6. peachpurple profile image82
    peachpurpleposted 2 years ago

    bring own tupperware, I see a few aunties bringing theirs when take away

    1. janshares profile image96
      jansharesposted 2 years agoin reply to this

      Ha ha. One of the patrons brings her own container for hot grits! That is an idea to consider, even for coffee and juice. Thanks so much, peachy.


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