Lunch is the most wasteful meal of the day. Every day in the US, 110 million plastic utensils and 225 thousand tons of food packaging go to the landfill because of our learned lunch behavior. Reusing anything is a good start. But what’s a lunch enthusiast to do when nothing’s made to last?
We spoke with over 600 veteran foodies about what they needed from a lunch solution. Consider this our state of the union on why you should invest in good lunchware.
An industry stuck in the past
Historically, lunchware was for the kids, designed to last for a single school year before breaking down or accumulating bacteria. Between the hard-to-clean materials and the pop culture lunch bag releases, kids will go through an average of 8 by the time they graduate middle school. Any clue where your childhood lunch boxes are now? If they’re not in your parent’s basement, they’re in a landfill. And we haven’t even gotten to the contents of the lunchbox, meaning the zip lock bags, plastic cutlery, paper napkins, etc.
For reasons unbeknownst to us, adult lunchware has been modeled after the solutions designed for children. We can name countless brands trying to make babies’ meal-time more sustainable, but when it comes to sustainable solutions for adults, that number mysteriously dwindles. What we see instead is lots of cheap neoprene, foam, and plastic that break down quickly, look unprofessional, and wreak havoc on the environment.
The lack of sustainable and suitable lunchware on the market leaves adults with 2 options: a) use unsustainable cheap fixes or b) buy takeout. Both contribute to lunch’s high environmental impact. Neither make you feel your best.
Modernizing lunchware & food storage
In our research, we discovered a huge disconnect between how people feel about their homemade lunches and the foodware they put them in. There was widespread embarrassment about bringing lunch from home - not because people weren’t excited about their meals, but because pulling out a paper bag or stained container in a meeting while others are dining on Sweetgreen salads doesn’t exactly elicit a glowing sense of pride.
Making your own food is one of the best things you can do for yourself and the planet, so why should it feel so damn embarrassing? Enter foodware that’s functional and aesthetically pleasing. Our Bag is the same quality as a high end handbag, made by the same people as Burbery and Michael Kors. Why? Because most interviewees bought one high end bag every 5 to 10 years, and kept it for life. We couldn’t understand why that kind of commitment and longevity didn’t exist in the foodware space – so we decided to come up with our own solutions and help to break the temporary foodwarecycle.
Every person who uses their Lunch Kit can keep 7,000 plastic forks, 21,000 food containers, and 14,000 napkins out of the landfill within their lifetime – not to mention all the lunch bags! Sure, our foodware is a little more expensive than most. But if you do the math, investing $245 in a Lunch Kit today can save you $10,000+ (amongst other benefits) five years from now. That’s the power of being good at lunch.