Packaging Pet Peeves
By: Ken Lay
I would like to take this opportunity to rant about the incredible amounts of waste we produce to package, transport and eat food.
I’ve had this pet peeve for a long time, but what brings it boiling to the top was a recent trip to Target. As I walked in, I was handed a sample of applesauce. This miniscule 3.2 ounces of food was packaged in heavy duty foil with a hard plastic screw cap. The applesauce was eaten in a couple of minutes, but the packaging will NEVER GO AWAY… EVER. It can be buried, but it will NEVER decompose.
Multiply this one package by the hundreds or thousands that were given away at Targets across Cincinnati and you have a considerable amount of trash. And this was just ONE sampling event, at ONE chain of stores, in ONE city.
To make matters worse, the applesauce was from FRANCE! Now, I enjoy a good Camembert cheese or Bordeaux myself, but these are items unique to France and I understand why they would be imported. The applesauce however, was a convenience food intended for school lunches and afternoon snacks. When I last looked, apples were not a foreign delicacy in the Ohio valley. Somehow, in the warped math of modern society, it’s cheaper to import small packets of applesauce ACROSS THE WORLD than it is to produce them in the same state you live.
I did a little research on the offending producer (GoGo Squeez), and while their mission of delivering all-natural products to the market is laudable, it comes at too high of a price in waste production and resources.
GoGo Squeez is certainly not alone however. Over-packaged micro-portions of convenience food is the norm, not the oddity. You know that saying “Once past the lips, forever on the hips?” It should be “Once past the lips, forever in the landfill.”