One of my fondest memories of elementary school was sitting at those small tables at lunchtime and opening up my lunch box to find a cup of boysenberry yogurt (Does anyone make this any more?). I would take the cup, turn it upside down on a plate, and with my fork, poke holes in the waxed paper bottom. Then, like a cup of custard or flan, I would pull the cup off to reveal a nice neat yogurt mound with those sweet purple berries oozing down the side.
Today, as the parent of a toddler, I wish for those paper yogurt cups for more than the enjoyment of opening them. Now whenever we eat yogurt, we must find a place to recycle those darn plastic cups. When plastic cups first came out, they had plastic tops. These, at least, could be reused. Today’s yogurt cups — plastic with foil tops — are useable only for starting plants from seed or mixing paint. In the yogurt industry’s attempt to use less plastic, they have inadvertently made their products more likely to be sent straight to the recycling, or worse, the landfill. A return to paper yogurt cups would mean an end to the growing pile of little plastic cup accumulating in my house and around the world. It would also mean the return of the joy of eating yogurt with the fruit on top!