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Containers To Go vs. Throw Aways

Reusable containers and bulk materials solve several problems -- with savings at the heart of this smarter way to reduce trash.

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Traditional Reusability

As a child, I carried a lunch box to school and my family used dishpans and buckets at home for chores and work such as watering our gardens and domestic animals, or even carrying tools around. Of course, I lived on a farm which is a relatively rare experience among the people I meet today.

But I'm seeing a resurgence of those same practical approaches to daily life being labeled "urban domestication" if you want to get fancy, or urban ag or urban farming or simplicity...etc.

Savings are Smarter

The point is...multi use tools and containers last longer, keep your home uncluttered, and cost less in the long run.

Lifestyle of Collecting Stuff

We live complex lives and we collect mountains of tools and supplies needed by a wide diversity of tasks: work, social and hobby clothing; computers of varying sizes and applications; art/communication supplies and tools; cooking, baking, BBQing and dining out tools...and the list goes on.

Dumping plastic bags, plastic utensils, plastic storage bins, and plastic bottles into the landfill has become a big problem at that end of the consumption cycle... but storing all these individualized containers has become a big problem on the consumer's end of the consumer society's process.

We need more closets, more dressers, more boxes and organizing systems to keep all this single-purpose, non-collapsible, specialized "stuff".

And that means we need larger housing, larger vehicles, and larger personal workspaces in which to store, use and hang onto the stuff we've invested in...because we might need it again sometime, and we paid for it once, so we might as well keep it rather than paying for it again.

Collecting stuff has become a vicious cycle!

Reusability Solutions

The solution? Reusable tools, containers, and materials.

Reusable tools can start with cloth or recyled material shopping bags; and reusable plates and utensils we carry with us to work, the coffee shop or restaurant. Even for airplanes and car trips.

Reusable containers can also be bulk food containers we use for organizing little stuff on our shelves...if we still need to do that!

Reusable materials can be paper that is reused after printing drafts and reports. We can use the backside for numerous purposes: double sided printing, notepads, scratch sheets, and even pass documents along to another reader.

Bulk purchases are a great strategy. Bulk oatmeal instead of individualized packets. A liter of juice instead of individual bottles. Bring back the pitcher!

To-Go Ware Food Tools for Reusability

My favorite solution today is the lunchbox -- all gussied up with new design, but serving that same old purpose. Reusable food portability.

One California company providing the tangible solution is To-Go Ware, a Berkeley company that manufactures, sells and distributes their reusable food tools. The product line includes food carriers, utensils, bags, beverage containers, and of course -- package deals.

If you're interested in selling To-Go Ware products in your retail establishment or online store, please email for more information and pricing.

"We all need tools to become Solutionaries as our world faces many challenges ecologically," Stephanie Bernstein, To-Go Ware's founder

To-Go Ware
2102 5th Street
Berkeley, CA 94710

Edited by Carolyn Allen, owner/editor of California Green Solutions
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