IN THE KNOW

Chopsticks With Scruples

Colorful and ecofriendly bamboo sticks you can reuse.

By Sandra Barron, Tuesday, Mar 24, 2009, 12:00 AM

(Levi Brown)

Noodle and sushi lovers in Japan toss out a whopping 25 billion pairs of disposable wooden chopsticks each year, costing the lives of millions of trees. If you're traveling to Japan, pick up a supply of My-Hashi My-Heart reusable bamboo sticks instead. Available in a kaleidoscope of 30 colors, from cherry blossom (salmon pink) to baby bamboo (light green), the chopsticks, or hashi in Japanese, sell for $7 a pair at Natural Lawson convenience stores, an upscale ecofriendly version of 7-Eleven. The chopsticks have become extremely popular lately, in part because of a growing concern among young Japanese about the environment. After all...it's trendy! Extra tip: Tokyo's cool crowd likes to mix up their hashi colors—why be boring with a matching set when you can make a statement with one pink and one green?