TODAY: Teens pave way for “container revolution” in hawker centres

Some teenagers are now taking the initiative to bring their own food containers when packing food from hawker centres. TODAY reports.

SINGAPORE – Lorraine Lim, Brisa Quek and Abigail Lee are ordinary teenagers.

They surf the Internet, listen to music, hang out with their friends and study for exams. But the students from Ngee Ann Secondary School have something else in common – they bring their own containers when they go to the hawker centres.

They said even if it is not so convenient, it is more environmentally-friendly and cost-efficient to do so.

“I think because it’s not common, other people would think that it is kind of tedious. They give me weird stares, like ‘why are you bringing such boxes!'” said Ms Quek.

“I find it quite troublesome, because you have to bring the container down and then back home again, simply for a meal. But when you think of the purposes and the benefits of doing so, it might actually be worth it,” said Ms Lim.

The girls also believe it is more hygienic to use their own containers.

“I guess using your own utensils means that you can clean it, you know how you cleaned it … You know what’s going to happen to it,” said Ms Lee.

In Februrary, the Hawker Centre Public Consultation Panel suggested that food rebates be offered to diners who bring their own containers. This is to cut down on the use of styrofoam and plastic food containers.

However, most customers who spoke to Channel NewsAsia said they would not consider bringing their own containers.

“Maybe it’s the culture, that we’ve not been taught when we were young (to bring our own containers). We’re talking about culture here. I don’t see any Singaporean doing it,” said a member of the public.

“Of course if you bring your own containers it’s definitely more hygienic, but right now the whole world is using disposable packaging materials,” said another.

The girls said they began using their own containers because they were influenced by their families and teachers.

Even though it is a small step, what these teenagers are doing could pave the way for what could be a “container revolution” in the heartlands.

Image taken from  tomono♪♪

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  • About Green Drinks Singapore

    Founded in November 2007, Green Drinks Singapore is one of more than 800 cities with a Green Drinks presence.

  • We are a non-profit environmental movement that connects academia, green businesses, activists, community and government, for knowledge sharing and collaboration opportunities. We do this by organising informal talks every last Thursday of the month, over drinks! Once in a while, we hold discussions, documentary screenings and workshops to further engage the public and participants.
  • Started in 1989 in London, the Green Drinks movement is a self-organising network that is meant to be simple and unstructured. The global site can be found at www.greendrinks.org.
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