Pack a Greener, Healthier Lunch


kids lunch
Are you packing a green and healthy lunch? Photo: Corbis



The average child eating a lunch packed using paper sacks, plastic lunch bags, and packaged convenience foods produces an estimated 67 pounds of lunch trash annually. The sorts of foods available in single-serve packaging is also usually of questionable nutrition and has traveled hundreds if not thousands of miles. If your lunch packing ritual has consisted of throw-away items like paper sacks, plastic lunch bags, and juice boxes, consider adding some green to your routine.


Lunch boxes with built-in containers eliminate the need for bags or other containers. This fun Bento Box, based on a traditional Japanese design, has four compartments in different shapes and sizes plus a small dip container, all made from safe plastics. Tight seals on one large container and the dip cube keep liquids from leaking and the multiple compartments lend themselves to balanced eating (and perhaps a geometry lesson for younger kids).


Older students and adults may prefer a larger, more refined box, such as a classic Indian Tiffin Box. Multiple layers in stainless steel latch together tightly and are perfect for packing cold leftovers. The lid doubles as a plate. For lunch, two tiers will probably suffice. Look for models with a divided top tier.

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