Tuesday, 28 June 2011

わりばし (waribashi) aka Disposable Chopsticks

わりばし is the name given to the wooden disposable chopsticks that come with many noodle boxes or Japanese meals. In Japan, they can be found in almost every restaurant and take away place - and that adds up to a huge number of chopsticks. Here are a few interesting facts about わりばし:
  • according to the Japan Times Online, 25 billion pairs of わりばし are used every year in Japan
  • the wood used in the 25 billion pairs of chopsticks would be enough to build 17,000 houses
  • If you put 25 billion pairs together end to end, they would go around the earth 125 times
Recently, a new movement has started in Japan, called 'My hashi' (hashi is the word for chopsticks). This movement is for people to take their own chopsticks to restaurants so that there are not so many disposable chopsticks used.
Some restaurants are now giving discounts for customers who bring their own chopsticks, and others have stopped using disposable chopsticks completely.

And believe it or not - most of Japan's disposable chopsticks are ... Made in China!

Information from Japan Times Online http://search.japantimes.co.jp/cgi-bin/fe20080730a1.html

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