Tag Archives: Palm Leaf

No Leaf Left Behind: Palm Leaf Offers the Greenest Option in Disposable Tableware

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Areca Tree

 For this week’s post, we are giving you a behind-the-scenes look at Bio & Chic’s Palm Leaf collection. A “fact sheet” on where the material comes from, how the products are made, and what makes using palm leaves such an incredibly unique and versatile option in tableware.

Where do the palm leaves come from and how are they collected?
From the fallen leaves of the Areca Palm tree (Areca Catechu). The leaves are collected after they dry and naturally fall to the ground. Because the huge leaves shed and fall naturally every few weeks (the leaves are never picked from the trees), the process does not require cutting or harming of any trees. When the old leaves fall, this leaves room for new leaves to grow.

How are the leaves turned into bowls and plates?
Only 2 things are required to make these products: fallen leaves and water. Once the leaves have been collected, they go through a thorough cleansing process to remove any clinging dirt. The clean leaves are then heat pressed and molded into our unique shapes and sizes. They are then trimmed to make nice and neat yet rustic designs, and then cleaned again to remove any dust produced in the cutting process. To reduce waste, each sheath is cut to make multiple bowls or plates.

How durable/safe are the palm leaf products?
Very. The plates and bowls are super light yet they retain their strength and durability until they are composted. Although we call them single-use, some of our customers tell us that they rinse and reuse. We do recommend however that especially in use with moist foods, the plates remain single use.

The products are 100% safe and non-toxic. They do not react with the food or add any additional taste to the food. Our products are made purely with leaves, and we do not use any glues, dyes, sealants, chemicals or strengthening materials.

Why do all of the products look different?
This is what makes the plates and bowls so special! Areca palm leaf sheaths have their own natural grain, leaf structure and characteristic texture (much like that seen in furniture grade wood), making every piece completely one-of-a-kind. All of the rich diverse colors of the original leaves remain in the final product.

Biodegradable and compostable, but are they recyclable?
The answer is no. While the products are completely biodegradable and compostable, they are not recyclable (a process that requires heat). Since they are made purely with leaves and water, they are ready to go back into the soil after use rather than be recycled. They will naturally be absorbed by the soil and will break down within 60 days, acting as organic manure. This makes palm leaf products the greenest disposable options available. Plus, composting uses 90% less energy than recycling.

                          Palm Leaf Oval Plate 7.5 inch - 210BBAEG19 Eco-FriendlySquare Palm Leaf Plate with Slanted Edges 10.6 in. - 210BBA2727 Eco-Friendlypalm-leaf-plate-dish-eco-friendly-biodegradable__15758.1406555081.1000.1200

Can they be used in the oven or microwave?

Yes, it’s safe to use them in the microwave on High for up to about 2 minutes. They can also be heated up to 350 °F/ 180°C in the oven for up to 45 minutes.

What about liquids?
Yes, these products are safe for both hot and cold liquids. There is no heat transference and they will maintain their shape with hot foods and liquids. The leaves are watertight and moisture cannot penetrate them so they will not get soggy like paper plates.

Can foods be stored in the freezer?
Yes, absolutely. The Palm Leaf plates and bowls are great for hot AND cold food, and can safely store food in the refrigerator as well as freezer.

What are some of the best uses for Bio & Chic’s Palm Leaf plates and bowls?
Because of the beautiful natural wood patterns and the durability of the tableware, we would recommend this collection for all types of events, both indoors and out. They can be dressed up (weddings) or dressed down for more casual events like cocktail parties and backyard BBQ’s. In addition to catered affairs, they are also an ideal and economical disposable solution for food service, hotels, fast food, foods-to-go, and food trucks.

Click here to see the full collection.

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NYC Council Approves Foam Containers Ban

As you may have heard, the plastic foam container ban has been approved by New York City Council in December, which is great news for Earth lovers and Eco-friendly companies! About a hundred cities already passed this ban – including San Francisco, Seattle and Portland – and after its past legislative session NYC becomes the largest U.S. city to implement this ban.

This ban however is only a compromise for now. It still gives officials – mostly Dart Container Corporation (one of the largest foam products manufacturers) and the American Chemistry Council – a whole year to try and prove that Styrofoam can be effectively, economically ad safely recycled. If this cannot be proved the ban will definitely be enforced in July 2015.

210CDP176-no-watermarkSince no municipality has been able to prove that plastic foam can be efficiently recycled yet, the ban is very likely to be enforced next year and that is why it would be best to be ahead of it and switch to more Eco-friendly solutions already. Luckily, many recyclable, biodegradable and compostable materials are used for disposable containers, tableware and even utensils. From Sugarcane to Bamboo, finding green solutions has never been so easy and if you know where to look it can also be very affordable.

Are you looking for takeout supplies? You can find great recyclable or biodegradable takeout containers and takeout boxes in many styles and colors.

Do you need disposable tableware for an event or a reception and want to have Eco-friendly items for all of your guests? You can find wooden tableware, sugarcane tableware, bamboo tableware or even palm leaf tableware that will look amazing on any table and add this special Eco-friendly touch that you were looking for.
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See, it is not hard to find any type of Eco-friendly item and get ready for next year when the foam ban will be enforced. Be ahead of competitors and go green already!

Check out all of our Eco-friendly products at www.bioandchic.com

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Tips For An Eco-Friendly Kid’s Birthday Party

We are often talking about hosting Eco-friendly catering events, wedding receptions or other parties, but we sometimes forget that kids too can have Eco-friendly birthday parties, and it is up to the parents to make it happen!

The organization and advice will be different but the objective is the same: have lots of fun while being Eco-responsible and respecting the earth.

In order to have enough time to organize a great Eco-friendly party for your children, the first thing to keep in mind is to start planning at least 2 to 3 months in advance. The more flexibility you have, the easier it will be to go green. The time of the year will also be important: during summer time, try to host the festivities outside to avoid the use of air conditioning, when in the winter it is more appropriate to stay inside.

Let’s get started with some Eco-friendly tips. When sending invitations, the best is of course to use social media, phones or emails but especially if you are planning 2 months in advance, you might want your kid’s guests to have a written trace of the invitation. In that case, go for handwritten invitations using recycled or recyclable paper!

Now you have to think about decorations. Kids love a colorful party but keep in mind that the worse thing to do for the earth is to have balloons! Yes they are pretty but they pollute the environment and are dangerous for the wildlife. You can find better options that are a lot greener. A fabric tenant banner for instance! Instead of buying disposable plastic ones, why not make your own by using fabric?

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Remember that if you are planning the party ahead of time, it’s precisely so you can have time to do things like that in order to go green. Flowers are also great to decorate and what’s more Eco-friendly than flowers! And if you are still trying to add color to your kids party, you can simply get some very Eco-friendly paper straw. Not only kids love them but they are also very colorful and add a sparkling touch to the party.

gift-boxThe next thing you have to think about is gifts. If you want your birthday presents and favors to be green, you have to first make sure that they are made of sustainable or recyclable material. Then keep in mind that wrapping paper is useless and often non-recyclable so choose reusable wooden boxes that kids will be able to keep for instance. It looks better and is more Eco-friendly!

What about the food and drinks you are going to serve? Not only you should buy locally grown and organic products – it’s better for the kids and for the environment – but you should also be careful and avoid individual packs such as water bottles or individually wrapped candies. Water dispensers and big bags of organic candies are a much better option if you are trying to stay green.

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When it comes to tableware, we all know that kids are clumsy and reusable tableware are often not an option. Go for biodegradable or compostable tableware in order to save yourself some trouble while still being sustainable. And if you really want to be careful about your trash, think about using a few platters instead of plenty of plates and serve food that don’t need the use of plates! Bamboo platters, wooden trays, sugarcane tray or even palm leaf trays, you can choose from multiple possibilities.

Last but not least, don’t forget to recycle by the end of the day!

You are now ready to plan an Eco-friendly birthday party for your kid, go ahead and have fun!

Check out all of our Eco-friendly products at www.bioandchic.com

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