Eco-Ware makes cents

Next time you eat your favorite campus meal a flat wrap from New World Tortilla, a burger at Brennans or Charlies falafel consider the amount of waste that is produced from your lunchs packaging.

Although most of the to-go containers Dining Services uses are either recyclable or compostable, we can do one better remove the waste produced from the system altogether.

Eco-Ware is a reusable take-out container program developed by UVM students, staff and University Dining Services and promoted by the Eco-Reps and Sodexo to reduce the environmental impact of take-out dining.

The program works in five easy steps:
1. Purchase an Eco-Ware cow tag at any Dining Services register for $7.50 that will be taken out of your points plan.

2. Give your tag to the Dining Services staff member on-campus who is making your wrap, sandwich or salad. They will take your tag and give you back your meal in a reusable container.

3. Pay at the register and reap the benefits: 15 cents will be taken off the total of your meal for using Eco-Ware, and an additional five cents for using a spork.

4. After your meal, return the container to any cash register to be washed and you will be given a new tag.

5. Repeat.

Since the programs launch in January 2011, Eco-Ware has expanded to nearly every dining location on campus.

More and more students are joining the program, but there are still thousands of meals being served every day in take-out containers.

Join the Eco-Ware program and eliminate waste from the system while saving a little money at the same time.

Eco-Ware pays for itself in 50 meals. Once you purchase a tag you are in the program for life. So let me just ask you one thing: Do you plan on eating more than 50 meals on campus by the time you graduate?