Moscow Co-op offers reusable plastic containers

Containers are part of continued sustainability efforts, easily sanitized


Businesses interested in joining Moscow Food Co-op’s sustainability efforts can reach the co-op at [email protected]. More information about the co-op’s efforts can be found on their website.

JAYCE CARRAL, Evergreen reporter

The Moscow Food Co-op is offering reusable plastic EcoToGo containers as part of the store’s environmentally friendly efforts. 

The boxes are nine by nine inches and made out of BPA-free plastic, said co-op marketing assistant Willow Venzke. 

Customers can buy the boxes for $7 at the co-op’s deli, take them home, then bring them back in exchange for a new one, she said.  

“So it’s basically a trading program. Each time you come back in, you get a new sanitized box,” she said. “But you indefinitely can keep reusing it.”

Food items from the deli, bakery or hot bar can be placed inside the box, Venzke said. 

The co-op’s main mission is to provide environmentally-friendly opportunities to its customers, said co-op marketing assistant Chloe Rambo. The box is a sustainable option to replace the single-use cardboard boxes that are also offered, which will still be offered for free like normal.  

The reusable boxes were ordered from a wholesale supplier, Rambo said. The boxes were sold at the co-op for the first time on Earth Day, but now they are an option to any customer. 

Venzke said she hopes other businesses in the Moscow area will join in the co-op’s sustainability efforts. 

In those efforts, the co-op has stopped offering plastic straws, Venzke said. Instead, cups are covered with a “sippy-type” lid, and reusable metal straws are available for purchase. 

The silverware provided at the co-op’s food areas are all metal instead of plastic or bamboo, Rambo said. This also prevents waste from single-use items. 

“We only have metal reusable silverware options that you can take home with you — even bring it back if it works out, but oftentimes folks don’t bring it back and that’s just fine,” she said. 

Customers are encouraged to bring their own reusable bags as well, Rambo said. When they do, they are given a 10-cent coin that can be donated to one of three nonprofit organizations in the area.

Rambo said the co-op received positive customer feedback about the boxes. 

“We really had a lot of people that were excited to see something that they could bring back and reuse,” she said, “something that was easily sanitized.” 

She said businesses interested in joining their sustainability efforts can reach the co-op at [email protected]. More information about the co-op’s efforts can be found on their website.