New reusable ‘to-go’ containers could save Clarkson University 15,000 boxes a year
Saturday, October 5, 2013 - 5:19 pm

POTSDAM -- Clarkson University dining services has added reusable “to-go” containers for use at campus dining halls.

“Through a partnership with Clarkson’s Institute for a Sustainable Environment and utilizing Aramark’s Green Thread environmental stewardship platform, we are now using reusable ‘to-go’ containers in our dining halls," said Courtney Evans, marketing manager for Clarkson Dining Services/Aramark.

Aramark estimates that the to-go containers will prevent more than 15,000 disposable boxes from entering landfills in the first semester.

Students purchase the reusable containers for $5, then return the empty box to a collection machine for a token for the next box.

Two dining locations will also exchange dirty boxes for clean, sanitized containers.

“The token system will give our customers the flexibility to drop off their used to-go containers whenever they choose, not having to worry about fitting a dirty box in their bag, carrying it to work or class, or retrieving it from their residence hall whenever they want a clean one," said Evans. "This makes it easier for students and staff to participate in the program and to help our campus reduce waste.”

A group of students participating in a 2013 Sustainability Fund Proposal project were the driving force behind the project.

In addition to reducing the number of disposables used on campus, the program has also committed to recycling the containers when necessary.