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About To-Go Ware

The story of To-Go Ware began back in 1997 over a dish of ice cream in Ann Arbor, Michigan.

To-Go Ware's founder, Stephanie Bernstein, was then a college student at the University of Michigan, watching as "to-go" culture began to emerge and find its way into the practices of local businesses. After enjoying some ice-cream "for-here" with her sister, she found it disturbing that even though she had not left the establishment, she had still been served in "to-go" plastic, and was expected to throw away her dish and spoon. Inspired by the college students who diligently carried their reusable coffee mugs around with them, she believed you could encourage people to expand this practice and use more durable, reusable methods for food as well as beverage, allowing for on-the-go convenience while remaining responsible citizens of planet Earth.

Stephanie began envisioning ways to promote these products and tools, trying to determine what designs would provide the utmost functionality and ease. She spent years in the Natural Products industry, food service and wellness fields and all informed the development of To-Go Ware. Now, years later, watching these products and concepts come to fruition has never seemed more urgent, as we are all needing tools to become Solutionaries as our world faces many challenges ecologically.

Contact To-Go Ware

2102 5th Street
Berkeley, CA, 94710
http://www.to-goware.com
510-225-4045

To-Go Ware - 2-Tier Recycled Cotton Carrier Bag Forest Green - CLEARANCE PRICEDAre You Good To Go?

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Item Code: 113373UPC Code: 689076085489
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To-Go Ware - 2-Tier Recycled Cotton Carrier Bag Forest Green

To-Go Ware 2-Tier Recycled Cotton Carrier Bag makes it even easier to take your 2-Tier Stainless Steel Food Carrier with you! To-Go Ware's new recycled cotton bags allow you a hands-free option for your carrying your lunch. The product is woven from cotton scraps collected from recycling sites throughout Ghaziabad, India, then dyed with natural dyes, cut and sewn. With an adjustable strap and added insulation, this carrier bag is essential accessory to keep you good to go. So if you are riding your bike or the subway, it makes it that much more convenient. Plus, it has a pocket to hold your utensil set!

The product is woven from cotton scraps collected from recycling sites throughout Ghaziabad, India, then dyed with natural dyes, cut and sewn.  The result is this hip, convenient carrier bag made of reclaimed materials kept out of the landfills, creating an even lower environmental impact for your life on-the-go! Available in Forest Green or Plum Brown.

To-Go Ware Food Carrier Bags

Are the cotton carrier bags made of organic cotton?
No, they are not made of organic cotton, rather they are made of reclaimed cotton from the communities of Ghaziabad, India. While To-Go Ware loves organic cotton, one of the core values of their mission is to identify creative ways to utilize the resources already present instead of creating product from virgin materials, even organic virgin materials. The cotton for the bags is collected at sites around Ghaziabad, as well as cotton scrap waste from production in the facility. The process includes: collecting, spinning, weaving and confectioning wastages and segregating them by color; they are then garneted to create the fibers, which are further re-spun to create yarns. These yarns are then used for weaving the fabric used to make their bags. The factory that makes them are certified ISO 14001, as well as providing labor protections for their employees.

How do I care for my cotton carrier bag?
The cotton carrier bag can be put in the washing machine, but To-Go Ware does not recommend that you put it in the dryer, and instead should be air dried.

Social, Environmental and Health Facts

Are To-Go Ware products Fair Trade?
Some of To-Go Ware's products are Fair Trade, such as those they have made by WEAVE. They provide both hand-made and manufactured items, therefore not all of their products are at present covered by fair trade certification. Those generally covered are hand-crafted goods and agricultural products (such as tea, coffee, chocolate, etc.). For To-Go Ware products not covered under this kind of certification, they work with companies abroad that conduct regular, surprise audits to ensure that the manufacturers are doing well by people and the planet.

Why is stainless steel better than plastic?
Although the process to make stainless steel requires extractive practices, which overall is not best for the environment, it should be noted that the intensive extractive process is offset by the fact that stainless steel, by its very nature, is 100% recyclable. Therefore, given the lifecycle of To-Go Ware's products as compared to plastics and compostables (both of which are extremely resource intensive to manufacture in relation to the amount of time they are actually used before being thrown away), they felt the intensiveness at the manufacturing stage was far outweighed by the extensive lifecycle and reduced overall environmental impact of their products. Additionally, because of its hygienic quality, stainless steel does not require harsh cleaners or a seal or finish applied to make it safe – adding additional health and environmental benefits to using stainless for food storage and transport.

About the CONSERVE Program
CONSERVE is a recycling and waste management NGO (non-governmental organization) that was founded in October 2003 in response to the mountains of garbage and litter, especially plastic bags that had become a common sight around the city of New Delhi.

The project employs poor urban women and men in the slums of east Delhi to collect, sort, weigh and clean plastic bags. Through a heating and pressing process, the plastic melts together creating a thicker more durable plastic material. Since the plastic bags come in all colors, different designs can be created using strips and cutouts of bags, no dyes or inks are required.

Founded by Anita Ahuja and her husband Shalabh, the team started a non-government, non-profit organization explaining how waste could be segregated and turned into a resource. Wet kitchen waste could be turned into compost; dry waste like paper and glass could be recycled. It was while segregating the waste that they encountered their most important challenge. "To-Go Ware had heard of organizations working with zero waste- it was something they could not understand. Despite their best efforts there was nothing they could do with the mounds of discarded plastic bags. The resale value of polythene is very low, so we started to experiment." That proved to be the turning point.

They washed the plastic bags, braided, rolled them and made them into tiny baskets. But it involved a lot of work, and the couple didn't see a market for their products. Still, it forced them to work harder to find a solution for the mounds of discarded plastic bags. Finally, they hit upon the idea of washing, drying and pressing the plastic into sheets, using a pressing machine. The result: they came up with small plastic sheets, roughly 12" by 7". It was the breakthrough they had all been waiting for. From here on it was left to everyone's imagination, and they eventually started a line of handbags and accessories fashioned out of the recycled material.

The couple then decided to also work with rag-pickers in Madhuban. "The rag-pickers are the most marginalized section of their society . . . they should be allowed to live with dignity and given the opportunity to make a good life."

At dawn every day the rag-pickers deliver the recycled plastic shopping bags to the non-profits headquarters. The handles and bottoms of the plastic bags are snipped away and the open sheets washed with detergent on a cemented buffalo water trough. They are hung to dry on a clothesline and then layered together and pressed to make sheets that are designed, cut and stitched to make the amazing, environmentally friendly and ethical bags.

The non-profit NGO currently employs over 300 people and exports bags all over the world, they use the money made from the sale of the bags to fund projects to help the rag-pickers and other marginalized sections of their community, such as building schools and employing more individuals.

About WEAVE
WEAVE Women's Education for Advancement and Empowerment (WEAVE) strives to create a world where empowered women and their children are free to exercise their rights and live peacefully in a just, humane and equitable society. The organization was founded in 1990, with the intent to empower indigenous women and support their needs and basic human rights. The organization has evolved over the years, especially in the context of the influx of refugees from Burma. One manner in which they seek this is through cottage industry, and WEAVE has produced a high-quality line of crafts that are produced by Burmese refugee women living in camps along the border.

WEAVE's goals are to provide education and training for displaced women and children from Burma and its bordering areas. They aim to foster the development of self-managing and self-sustaining women's organizations and community based projects, and to raise the level of awareness of issues affecting displaced women and children from Burma and its bordering areas in partnership with women's organizations.

WEAVE's target communities are displaced persons, particularly women, recognizing their role in providing for their families and in ensuring the well-being of their children. Their work rives has expanded to include the Indo-China-Burma border, but mainly concentrates along the Thai-Burma border. WEAVE is a member of the Fair Trade Federation.

About Fair Trade
Fair trade means an equitable and fair partnership between businesses and organizations in the developed world and producers in the developing world. Fair trade businesses foster long-term and direct relationships with producers, because To-Go Ware knows these connections are a highly effective way to help producers help themselves.

  • Paying fair wages in local context
  • Supporting participatory workplaces
  • Ensuring environmental sustainability
  • Supplying financial and technical support
  • Respecting cultural identity
  • Offering public accountability
  • Educating consumers

To-Go Ware's Mission
To-Go Ware's mission is to make available innovative products that provide a solution, tell a great story, and are enjoyable to use. To-Go Ware seeks to stimulate positive practices for the way people live in relationship with themselves, their neighbors and the planet. To-Go Ware hopes to empower people to participate in the process of changing the world they live in by providing them the tools to do so.

To-Go Ware offers solutions for a world with life on-the-go. Life is moving fast for everyone these days, and sometimes that can cause them difficulty in making conscious lifestyle choices-especially when it comes to food! With the explosion of "to-go" culture, there is no shortage of disposable containers and utensils crossing their paths everywhere they go, and they've all started to feed the landfill more than they may realize. How many plastic forks and spoons do they toss away each week? How many plates, to-go boxes, napkins and cups? Start to do the math and see what that adds up to per year-you may be surprised at the impact you are having.

If we cannot abandon our need for "to-go" convenience as we move through our busy lives, we can certainly integrate ways of being more mindful and conscious of the impact our lifestyle has upon the planet. To-Go Ware hopes that they can provide you the tools to make that difference, allowing you to be a Solutionary in these to-go times.

As a business, To-Go Ware seeks to implement a triple bottom line — people, planet and profit — in meaningful and sincere ways. To-Go Ware is very proud of the practices they've been able to implement in order to realize this vision.

To-Go Ware understands the interconnected and interdependent issues of social, economic and environmental justice - this understanding guides all of their business decisions. To-Go Ware seeks to continually examine the resources and privileges they have as a company operating in the Global North and how their business practices impact the lives of people around the world. To-Go Ware is committed to creating equitable and respectful business relationships with companies locally and abroad. To-Go Ware gives preference to business partnerships with companies owned and operated by women or other traditionally marginalized groups, as well as small businesses.

Additionally, they believe in and support the Principles of Environmental Justice adopted by the delegates to the First National People of Color Environmental Leadership Summit (1991), as well as the Bali Principles of Climate Justice developed by an international coalition of groups gathered in Johannesburg for the Earth Summit (2002).

Suggested Use
Use for 2-Tier Stainless Steel Food Carrier.
Ingredients

Recycled Cotton, Natural Dyes
About To-Go Ware

The story of To-Go Ware began back in 1997 over a dish of ice cream in Ann Arbor, Michigan.

To-Go Ware's founder, Stephanie Bernstein, was then a college student at the University of Michigan, watching as "to-go" culture began to emerge and find its way into the practices of local businesses. After enjoying some ice-cream "for-here" with her sister, she found it disturbing that even though she had not left the establishment, she had still been served in "to-go" plastic, and was expected to throw away her dish and spoon. Inspired by the college students who diligently carried their reusable coffee mugs around with them, she believed you could encourage people to expand this practice and use more durable, reusable methods for food as well as beverage, allowing for on-the-go convenience while remaining responsible citizens of planet Earth.

Stephanie began envisioning ways to promote these products and tools, trying to determine what designs would provide the utmost functionality and ease. She spent years in the Natural Products industry, food service and wellness fields and all informed the development of To-Go Ware. Now, years later, watching these products and concepts come to fruition has never seemed more urgent, as we are all needing tools to become Solutionaries as our world faces many challenges ecologically.


2102 5th Street
Berkeley, CA, 94710
Phone: 510-225-4045
Fax: 510-225-2965
http://www.to-goware.com
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