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NYC and LA schools introduce new compostable lunch trays

The Urban School Food Alliance has announced that they’re making the switch from styrofoam lunch trays to compostable plates made of recycled newsprint. The Alliance is made up of administrators from some of the biggest school districts in the United States: New York City, Los Angeles, Miami, Chicago, Dallas, and Orlando. When the change takes effect, it’ll have no small impact – the schools in Alliance districts serve 2.5 million meals a day.
While those familiar white, polystyrene lunch trays can take hundreds of years to break down in landfills, the new plates break down in only a few weeks in the right composting conditions. As polystyrene disintegrates, it releases pollutants into our air and water supply. Meanwhile, the compostable plates are made of renewable resources, and divert recyclable material from landfills while costing only a ninth of a cent more to produce.
For the program to be completely effective, of course, there must be adequate composting facilities nearby. While New York is on track in its mission to compost school lunch waste, the Miami-Dade district, for example, is still figuring out how to incorporate their new waste stream. But the incentives are clear; composting can save school districts plenty of money. Per ton, sending waste to a landfill costs between $50 and $100; meanwhile, composting only costs $20.I hope schools around the country can learn from these pilot programs in composting, and implement similar measures soon!!
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they need to worry about the food they feed them. not the trays smh
This is great news.
I appreciate how government-run institutions like schools are taking more and more accountability for their impact on health, the environment, etc. Yeah, like @AthenaCamilleTh said, they really need to be focusing on the nutritional value of the foods they offer, but at the same time, it would only be ironic for schools to be working to shape the futures of these children without making sure that these future generations have a sound environment to live in too.
@AthenaCamilleTh You're absolutely right. That might be an even more pressing issue... Like since when does pizza count as a vegetable???
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