Cardboard boxes vs. reusable packing crates. We know who should win this competition.

Reuse is a challenge in food service due to food safety concerns, but we are doing our part. Students are learning about separating recyclable trash, composting waste generated by gardening and food preparation, and experimenting with the special packaging requirements for hydroponic lettuce (paper does not do the trick . . . we’re still trying). Recently, through our Farm to School grant, we were able to purchase reusable packing crates – also known as RPCs – which will help reduce the number of waxed cardboard boxes in the landfills. RPCs are being used to transport lettuce from both local farms and our greenhouse to the lunchroom. In the process, students are using their food safety skills as they work with staff and volunteers to wash and sanitize the crates as they head back into the cycle. This is another way the Farm to School to Work Hub is keeping it local and keeping it healthy – for our students, our farms, and our environment.