Americans celebrating a big game will buy, prepare, and devour lots of food and drink. For example, more food is consumed on Super Bowl Sunday in the U.S. than any day except Thanksgiving, according to the USDA.
That can result in quite a bit of waste.
We all want to lighten our environmental footprint without sacrificing the things we love, such as big game day celebrations and tailgate parties. Fortunately, plastics we use in the kitchen can help us prepare, transport, serve, and store our favorite game day food and drinks while reducing waste.
Here are a few tips from Plastics Make it Possible® on how sports fans can do more with less—and contribute to sustainability—on game day:
- Less Packaging: Look for multi-function packaging. For example, some prepared foods now are available in plastic packaging that keeps food fresh on store shelves, transforms into a convenient serving dish during the party, and re-seals to protect food during storage, creating less waste and clean up.
- Less Packaging Waste: Choose new minimalist packaging designs made with thin, lightweight plastics that protect food using less material, resulting in less packaging waste. And lighter packaging means a lighter load and less fuel used when shipping food and drinks to stores.
- Less Food Waste: Don’t forget airtight plastic storage containers to help keep prepared foods fresh while transporting them to parties and tailgates. These durable, lightweight containers are easy to carry and also can be used as serving dishes, which results in less cleanup. Simply re-seal the container and refrigerate or freeze to preserve leftovers and prevent wasted food.
- More Streamlined Food Prep: Plastic kitchen tools help make game day food prep quicker and easier, so fans can spend more time enjoying the game and less in the kitchen. Use silicone plastic mats and baking molds to help cooked foods slide out easily—they also can reduce the amount of added fats needed to make game day treats.
- More Recycled Plastics: It’s now easy to find kitchen tools made with recycled plastics from used beverage bottles, yogurt containers, milk jugs, or other products. Look online or at local retailers for kitchenware made with recycled plastics, which increases demand for recycled plastics and helps keep valuable materials out of landfills.
- More Plastics Recycling: Consumers in more than 90 percent of the U.S. can recycle plastic beverage bottles and caps, and nearly 58 percent can recycle plastic containers from foods such as yogurt, dips, spreads, and sour cream. Place a clearly labeled recycling bin next to the trashcan to make it easy for game day guests to recycle. Plastic bags and wraps can be returned for recycling to participating retail stores, such as Target and Lowe’s. (Sports fans can make sure they’re recycling everything they can by visiting Earth911.com and typing in a local zip code to find out what’s accepted in community recycling programs.)
To help spread the word about how plastics help us do more with less, Plastics Make it Possible® has teamed up with four popular food bloggers in a Game Day Recipe Challenge to create iconic sports fan recipes using plastic kitchen tools. Then sports fans can vote online for their favorite recipe and be entered in a Game Day Giveaway for one of five $250 gift cards—and the blogger with the most votes also wins a gift card. In addition, the bloggers will share their experiences using plastics in the kitchen to create their recipes and to generate less waste.
Sports fans (actually, any grown up) can view the bloggers’ recipes here.
Click here for the Game Day Recipe Challenge official rules, this giveaway is closed.