Reusable Chopsticks: Save A Rainforest

there's a pair of sticks with your name on them...

I wish more Japanese and sushi restaurants would begin a practice recently instated at Sushi Bon, in Lantana. Customers can buy a set of chopsticks in a decorative box for $10, and the Bon waitstaff will see that they're properly labeled, washed, and stored for your next visit. My spouselet and I each bought a set last month -- I chose a box decorated with cute pink bunnies and a pair of matching pink-tipped sticks -- and now every time we belly up to the bar for a spot of fresh fluke, snapper, aji, or triggerfish sashimi, we get to eat with out own pins:

Why is having your own set important? Hit the jump.

Rainforest trees, valuable for their role in mitigating global warming and for biodiversity, are being sawed down to make those wooden chopsticks that get thrown away after every meal. The Asians are well ahead of us on this one -- there's a well entrenched "carry your own chopsticks movement" in China, where one blog claims that:

China now produces and discards more than 45 billion pairs of disposable chopsticks every year, cutting down as many as 25 million trees in the process, according to government statistics. Another 15 billion pairs are exported to Japan, South Korea and other countries. At the current rate of timber use, environmentalists warn, China will consume its remaining forests in about a decade.

Here's another cool idea: people are making stuff out of recycled chopsticks.

go to Earth First to see more

I like the idea, though, of having my sticks waiting for me at my favorite sushi joint. Sorta like having a beer mug with your name on it at your regular watering hole.

--Gail Shepherd

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