It’s been a little over two weeks since we asked the question, “Why Do We Use So Much Plastic Foam In Hawaii?” Since then, we’ve learned about the plastic foam supply chain and that Hawaii manufactures some plastic foam locally. Now we wanted to see how practical it was to avoid using plastic foam.

Last week, Plastic Free Kailua commented on one of our “Friend or Foam” posts. They wrote:

…One important thing to me is that as the customer, we have the ultimate say. We can ask our favorite lunch spot to transition to more sustainable choices (that I hope we will learn about in a future post) or ask to bring in our own reusable containers??

We heard you, Plastic Free Kailua. We went to To Thai For, one of our favorite restaurants in Kaimuki, and asked if we could bring in our own food containers. Natalie Pornngam, the owner, was more than happy to accommodate our request.

She told us that by bringing in our own containers, we’d be helping them as well. They pay 25 cents per small plastic foam box, 45 cents per large plastic foam box and 40 cents per plastic curry container with lid.

Last Friday, the Civil Beat clan brought in our own food containers, dropped them off at To Thai For, placed our order, and voilà — we had a plastic foam-free lunch. It was that easy.

We calculated that we saved To Thai For $5.35 on our entire lunch order, but who knows what we saved in environmental impact? For the first time after a group takeout lunch we didn’t have overflowing plastic foam in trash cans.

Take a look at the slideshow below.


Read our related stories about plastic foam in Hawaii:


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