GreenShifting gear (Day 313)…

January 7, 2008

ghazale

In the little “About” sidebar on this page, I mention an anti-styrofoam party I went to some months ago. It was in support of NaturoPack, an advocacy group which promotes the sale of biodegradable packaging made from corn, an alternative to polystyrene gradually being adopted by some takeout restaurants in Toronto. But just as much credit — or perhaps more, really — should go to GreenShift, the local organization actually facilitating such switch-overs and helping companies green themselves, whether it’s through takeout containers or a full environmental audit.

Restaurants like Ghazale, which has the best falafel in the city (a title that used to be held by Akram’s in Kensington — his secret to the crunch of the balls was that he didn’t actually use any chick peas but rather a blend of less oil-absorbing beans — until he started skimping on the tabbouleh), have signed up to GreenShift, as have upscale establishments like Kalendar and Le Paradis, plus the usual suspects (veggie restos like Urban Herbivore, Fressen and Fresh, which will give you 15% off your bill when you bring your own Tupperware), cafés like Poor John’s and my personal fave Café Taste, which doesn’t actually offer any takeout except in reusable containers (if you don’t have any, the owner will give you some of his to bring back… also, on a completely unrelated note, you’ve gotta love their Free Film Sundays, especially with this lineup: The Tobacco Conspiracy, Global Warming, Our Times and The Last Mogul).

So from now on, whenever I eat out, I’m going to support local restaurants that serve organic food and have GreenShifted their ways.

Photo courtesy of leslita_bee on Flickr

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Cones not cups (Day 213)…

September 29, 2007

ice cream

Thanks to Laura W for her suggestion yesterday, which was pretty much the cutest idea for a green change ever: Eating ice cream in a cone rather than a disposable cup. Granted, I’ve already pledged not to order any takeout food unless it meets all my local/organic criteria and I bring my own containers, but this was just such an original, simple thing to do, I figured I’d write about it anyway.

Of course, if you’re eating ice cream at home, you can just use a regular bowl or try baking some homemade waffle cones. But if you’re walking around on a hot, sunny day and hear the familiar Siren’s call of that little white truck, best to get it in a receptacle you can eat rather than one you throw away (and ask them to skip the paper napkin, too).