A pilot program that tested reusable takeout containers at Dobbins Dining Hall and Bruno's Cafe will expand to all Penn State campuses this fall.
The Green2Go program offers washable, eco-friendly takeout containers for students who are too busy to sit for an extended lunch or dinner. The containers were first offered at Penn State Behrend and at the Pollock Dining Commons at University Park in March.
“They’re good for the environment,” said Isaiah Boswell, a senior who helped test the containers during the spring 2014 semester. “It’s one less thing going into the landfill.”
Students pay a small deposit when they first take the container, which is dishwasher- and microwave-safe. They are issued a refund when they return it.
The Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture and the Erie County Health Department have approved use of the containers, which were tested at Penn State Behrend and at University Park before being offered to students at other campuses. Purchases can be made through campus meal plans, using LionCash+.
Penn State Behrend students purchased 330 containers during an eight-week test period this spring. Employees at Dobbins Dining Hall filled an average of 22 containers each week, said Mike Lindner, director of housing and food services.
“We’re always looking at ways to be more sustainable,” Lindner said. “This does that. It limits the polystyrene waste. It also gives our students another choice."