Stout takeout goes reusable
by Matt Ledger
Recently, UW-Stout upped its commitment to the three Rs. No, I don’t mean reading, writing, and ‘rithmetic (they’re already doing fine with those), I’m talking about the three environmental Rs: reducing, reusing, and recycling. Stout’s been offering compostable takeout containers for two years now, but this February the school decided to take it a step further and offer takeout containers that are completely reusable as well.
The containers cost students $5 a piece, with additional costs for to-go cups and silverware, but when you figure that each disposable to-go container costs students 60 cents, the reusable containers can actually end up saving students some money. The program requires some minimal brainpower on the students’ part, as they have to remember to return their old containers so that they can be given fresh ones at their next meal, but hey, they’re college students. They can handle it. According to the article on the containers at Stout’s news page, the program's not off to a bad start, as:
"Since the program began in early February, 35 students have signed up for the option and used it more than 250 times, keeping 500 containers/beverage cups from the landfill."
The article goes on to say, however, that the Stout dining halls serve almost 26,000 takeout meals a year, so there’s a lot more waste that can still be saved. This academic year’s almost over, but it’s not too late for students to sign up for the reusable takeout containers, as the costs they pay this year will carry over to next semester.
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