Hawker culture is a valuable, unique part of life that you can only experience in Singapore. With a wide variety of dishes under a roof, people from all walks of life gather to mingle and interact with one another. In a country that is home to a melting pot of cultures and all races, it is no wonder that Singaporeans are worried about preserving this slowly disappearing trade.
Young hawkers would understand the struggle of running a hawker stall. Like every other business, it requires its unique brand and loyal customer base to succeed. That often requires the incorporation of modern branding elements such as sustainability and environmental consciousness.
At the same time, preserving traditions unique to Singapore is also a priority. Whether or not you are a young hawker who wants the best of both worlds or you are a seasoned veteran who wants to make the switch over to sustainability, these four methods for eco-friendly hawker packaging are what you are looking for.
1. Sugarcane bagasse containers
Sustainability is not just about waste. Truly sustainable products offer immense mileage by generating minimal waste during both the production process and after the product's lifespan. If you want to centre your stall’s identity around sustainability, selecting products that leave behind minimal carbon footprints in the production process is an important step you must take.
Disposable lunch boxes in Singapore are widely used for their convenience as people continue to lead fast-paced lifestyles. While ensuring convenience for your customers will play a huge role in receiving continued support, you should also look for eco-friendly materials for your takeaway boxes.
Sugarcane bagasse is the solution you need. It is popular among many younger food vendors due to its minimal carbon footprint and recyclable properties. Juice is extracted from the sugarcane plant for a wide range of commercial purposes, leaving behind plant fibre that is otherwise known as bagasse. As a plant fibre, it is biodegradable and will decompose naturally after use. It also only requires minimal processing before it is ready for sale, and with over 54 million tons produced yearly, bagasse is in high supply and has an affordable price point.
Sugarcane bagasse can also hold a wide range of foods at varying temperatures. If your stall serves hot soups and noodles, you also do not have to worry about toxins that may leak from plastic containers if you use sugarcane bagasse bowls.
2. Kraft paper bowls and trays
If you want to offer a variety of takeaway boxes, you can also consider including Kraft bowls as part of your takeaway box selection. Kraft paper bowls use a lot less plastic than traditional plastic containers, as they are only coated with a thin layer of polyethylene. Fewer toxins are generated in the production of Kraft paper containers as plastic is only a secondary feature to minimise grease and protect your food from bacteria.
The production process for Kraft paper accepts a wide range of wood types, reducing wood waste as these materials are given a new purpose. Bark stumps and forest remnants that would otherwise be burned are instead used for commercial purposes as a form of smart packaging.
Kraft paper is not limited to takeaway packaging. It can also be used to make paper trays to serve oilier foods for dine-in customers. While reusable plates and bowls often undergo intense washing to remove the remnants of oil and grease from certain hawker dishes, Kraft boat trays can be disposed of after use without generating excessive carbon waste.
3. Paper cups
Plastic cups work for cold drinks and icy desserts, but if your customers are ordering hot drinks back to the office or home, how about serving them in paper cups? Paper cups undergo a simpler production process as they mainly require pulp and water to form, while plastic cups include many other chemicals that often cause pollution if not disposed of properly.
Swap out your plastic drink bags for paper cups instead! If you are purchasing plastic cups alongside your paper cups, opt for Supply Smith’s selection of cold cups that are practical, safe, and economical.
Participating in sustainability while showcasing traditional local flavours has never been easier with a wide selection of environmentally conscious packaging methods. If you are looking to kickstart a sustainable, eco-friendly hawker business, Supply Smith’s extensive range of packaging solutions will help you embark on your journey towards a greener future.