Back-to-school: some tips for a zero waste kids lunch box

Does your school adopt a zero waste lunch box policy yet? If not then perhaps you can suggest it – it’s easy!

You can do small things to help our planet by keeping single-use plastics out of school lunches.

Beeswax wraps are a great alternative to using single use plastic wrap and it’s an easy process you can do at home. Learn a new skill while helping keep our oceans plastic free.

Watch How to Make a Beeswax Wrap

You will need:

  • Washed cotton fabric squares
  • One cup of grated beeswax*
  • Iron
  • One piece of cardboard
  • Two sheets of grease proof paper (cut larger than fabric square)*We suggest using a cheap/second hand grater and iron to be dedicated to this purpose. Both items will no longer be suitable for everyday use.


  1. Lay down a sheet of cardboard and turn your iron on to medium heat.
  2. Place a sheet of greaseproof paper onto the cardboard then lay one of your cotton squares on top of this.
  3. Evenly sprinkle your beeswax over the cotton square, making sure you go all the way to the edges.
  4. Place a second sheet of greaseproof paper on top of the wax and cotton square, then iron over it.
  5. Peel back the paper to check that the wax is evenly melted. You may need to sprinkle more wax on for even coverage and then replace the paper and iron again.
  6. Hold up the fabric between the sheets of greaseproof paper and let it cool.
  7. Peel the wax infused cotton square off the greaseproof paper.
  8. Use as you would single use plastic wrap! It’s recommended that you don’t use it on dairy or meat products as they may leave harmful bacteria on the wrap.

A Clean Up Australia Day Schools Clean Up (March) is a great way to inspire students to learn about the impact of rubbish on their local environment while playing an active role in their community.

It’s a day when students and teachers work together to clean up an area which is special to you. It can be the play ground, a local park, or maybe bushland near your school – it’s up to you. Get involved!
Photo: Oxfam
Information provided by Northern Beaches Council