The new school year is a great opportunity to refocus on what really matter to you and your family.

To help you kick your 2021 eco-friendly goals, there are easy ways to make your child school lunch box more sustainable and waste-free.

Ryan Collins, Head of Circular Economy Programs, Planet Ark says, “Taking part in a waste-free lunch box challenge is a great way to teach children about the importance of reducing the amount of packaging we consume.”

Ryan says recycling right is an example of how a small action can make a big difference.

“Looking for the Australasian Recycling Label on our product packaging every time we are at the bin helps us to recycle correctly, and achieve our new year waste resolutions.”

Here are some practical tips to get you started:

Reusable drink bottle

Swap single-use plastic for a reusable drink bottle. Products made from stainless steel are hard wearing and keep the contents cool during hot summer months.

Take part in a waste-free challenge and encourage your kids to reduce the amount of packaging we consume.

Reusable containers

Reusable containers are the cornerstone of a waste-free lunch! Suitably sized containers will keep sandwiches intact and make little treats easy to pack.

Although reusable containers may have a higher upfront cost than a roll of plastic wrap, they are durable, they will save you money in the longer term and they will help to reduce waste.

Recycle packaging

The Australasian Recycling Label (ARL) shows you how to recycle each part of your product’s packaging.

Look for the label on your packaging every time you are at the bin to recycle right. When you recycle correctly, packaging can be reused to make future products.

Buying in bulk

Buying lunchbox items such as juice, yoghurt, crackers, biscuits and cheese in bulk quantities or containers, rather than in individual servings, will reduce packaging waste and save you money.

It also allows your child to eat only as much as they want at one time, and then they can reseal the container.

Buying standard lunchbox items, like crackers and cheese, in bulk will reduce packaging waste and save you money.

Compost your food scraps

Don’t ditch your food scraps! Place leftover organic scraps into your home compost. This will improve the quality of your soil and divert food waste from landfill.

For more eco-friendly tips and family-friendly resources, visit Planet Ark.