>> Thursday, March 11, 2010
There are still a couple more weeks until the waste-free lunch challenge, but here's your chance to get a head start with a fabulous new lunchbox.
When First Son started kindergarten this year, I thought about getting him his very own lunchbox as a "congratulations on being a big kid" gift, and of all the eco-friendly lunchboxes I discovered in my search for the perfect lunchbox, the PlanetBox was the one I drooled over the most. We ended up getting him a school sweatshirt instead of a lunchbox, so when the PlanetBox arrived in my mail for this review, it was the first time I'd seen it in person. And it only made me want it more!
Here are the things I love about this lunchbox:
- It's made of stainless steel - not plastic.
- It's all one piece - not a bunch of containers and lids that your child has to keep track of.
- The food compartments are designed cafeteria-tray style, which is what we use at home. First Son has issues with food touching.
- It's long-lasting and recyclable at the end of it's life.
- It's dishwasher safe.
- The PlanetBox arrived at my door via USPS in a cardboard box with paper packaging. USPS is my preferred carrier because they come to my door anyway (and my postman comes on foot!), unlike other carriers that have to make a special trip.
- The PlanetBox lunchbox is made of high quality stainless steel, which is safe for food and completely recyclable. The magnets are made out of a synthetic rubber (not PVC). The carry bags are made of recycled plastic and contain no "lead, vinyl/PVC, Phthalates, Bisphenol-A(BPA) or other harmful or toxic substances."
- Planet Box has this to say about their manufacturing:
Our stainless steel lunch boxes are made in Taiwan, and our magnets and bags are made in China. When we started our company, we did an extensive search domestically in the USA for suppliers who could manufacture our product. We were unable to locate manufacturing partners within the USA who could meet our needs. The one domestic manufacturer that we found who was willing to partner with us would have charged us a rate that meant we would have to sell the PlanetBox for $300 a piece! We share many of our customer’s concerns about working conditions abroad, and we work to make sure that the suppliers we choose to partner with provide ethical treatment to their employees and the environment.(Simple Shoes says the same type of thing about why they manufacture their shoes overseas. I think it's really unfortunate, but I also don't want to pay $300 for a child's lunchbox! It's a tough, tough situation.)
- Stainless steel is a long-lasting, durable material, and the lunchbox seems well-constructed. Each stainless steel lunchbox carries a five-year warranty covering defects in material or workmanship, and the carry bags have a one-year warranty.
- Unfortunately, the PlanetBox is not only the best eco-friendly lunchbox I've seen, it's also the most expensive ($35 for the lunchbox, $50 for the lunchbox and dippers, $60 for the whole package). However, the PlanetBox should last your child many, many years, and when you compare the cost of this lunchbox to the cost of purchasing disposable baggies and lunchbags, or the cost of purchasing a new vinyl lunchbag every year, you'll still come out far ahead.
- Currently, the PlanetBox is only available for purchase on their website.
Leave a comment on this post stating your favorite waste-free lunch idea. You can earn up to two extra entries by sharing this post on Facebook or tweeting it on Twitter and then leaving a comment for each thing that you do. This is completely based on the honor system, and remember that each comment is a separate entry.
The winner of the PlanetBox giveaway is ME!, who wrote:
I am an elementary teacher and just today I have been creating ways for each grade level at our school to work on saving Earth! I want my class work on school lunches...how to bring reuseable containers and to work on not wasting food. Wouldn't it be great to have one of these lunch boxes as a giveaway!!!!! And I too came here from Big Green Purse!I think it's pretty cool that the prize for this giveaway will be used in another giveaway. Hopefully it will help spread the word even more about this great lunchbox.
Thanks to everyone who entered. If you didn't win, you can purchase your own stainless steel lunchbox by visiting PlanetBox.
UPDATE: In response to a couple comments, I wrote:
Maren has a very good question. It's a bit heavier than a typical lunchbox, but it's definitely not heavy. Their website says, "It weighs 19 oz – less than most Harry Potter books!" :) I think it could be heavy for a preschooler but it would be fine for a kid in elementary school or older.
My other big concern for a kid's lunchbox was whether or not my child could open it without adult help. I like the Goodbyn (www.goodbyn.com), but I read some reviews saying it's difficult for a young kid to open. The PlanetBox is very easy to open with a little latch.
You have hereby been challenged to go green in a year without going broke! Check out the last challenge, or view the whole list of Challengicious Mondays. Sign up for my RSS feed, follow me on Twitter, and join my "Go Green without Going Broke" group on Facebook!
- Disclosure: PlanetBox did not compensate me in any way for this review. Most of the information in this review comes from their website, but the opinions are entirely my own.
- Images courtesy of PlanetBox