Waste isn’t a word Naperville moms Megan Wojtyla and Felice Farran like, even when it comes to their kids’ school lunches. Unwilling to use disposable napkins and unable to find fun absorbent cloth napkins in kid size, they decided to make their own.
Their Litter Free Lunch cloth napkins, in packages of five—one napkin a day, featuring sports themes, flowers and great colors and organic cloth varieties—range in price from $19.99 to $27.99, available at www.litterfreelunch.com. Even adults are now buying them for their own litter-free work lunches.
"The economic benefits and environmental benefits of packing a litter-free lunch are huge," says Wojtyla, a mom of four. Families, she says, spend a couple hundred dollars every year on disposal napkins alone. Litter-Free Lunch napkins, made in Illinois, last for years, she says.
Kids can even use them as place mats to cut down on germs or allergens on the lunch tables while also learning about protecting the environment.
Ditch the baggies, too
According to The Green Book by Elizabeth Rogers and Thomas M. Kostigen, using a lunch box, reusable containers for food, a thermos for drinks, a cloth napkin and silverware you could save not only about 67 pounds of waste a year but about $250. Don’t forget about snacks. Although individual bags are convenient, they add unnecessary packaging to landfills and are more expensive. Instead, buy small reusable containers.