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Cafeteria take-home goes green with clamshell trays

In an effort to go green, the cafeterias are switching to a more eco-friendly take-home option.

“This month clamshells will replace the Styrofoam and cardboard takeout containers in the cafeterias,” Student Body Vice President Tricia Anklan said. “They were chosen because they are environmentally friendly and more cost effective than traditional disposable containers.”

Clamshell boxes resemble a typical take-home box, but are made of durable plastic ideal for reuse. These reusable containers will help lessen cafeteria waste.

“This is an effort to reduce waste and help maintain a better ecosystem,” Director of Campus Dining Services Ron Gibson said. “We are looking at every avenue with regards to providing a lower carbon foot print and an all around greener campus.”

Students can purchase a reusable clamshell container for about $4, replacing the Styrofoam to-go boxes currently used in cafeterias.

Students who return their clamshell containers to the dining hall for washing will receive a token, which can be redeemed for a new container on their next visit.

“The students will be charged for the container and if they bring it back or return the token at the end of the year we will refund their money,” Gibson said. “[It’s] more of a deposit.”

Some students said the new trays are a good idea.

“I live off-campus and don’t eat in the dorms anymore, but I think this is a great idea because we need to have more ways to recycle at Bradley,” said junior public relations major Roxanne Gomez. “This would be a great way to push people to do so.”

Anklan said she is hopeful the containers will be implemented next week and is expecting high student participation.

“We saw exceptionally high student support in a survey conducted last semester, so we are expecting student participation,” she said.

Students from the sustainability committee will be around cafeterias helping everyone get acquainted with the new program.

“There are going to be several students from the sustainability committee assisting in food locations with how this works and why we have chosen the program,” Gibson said. “We are hoping to have them in all food locations by fall of next year.”

Freshman graphic design major Sarah Fleming said she is eager for the new program.

“I think the clamshell trays are a really good idea and a great way to help the environment,” she said.