Stryofoam vs. Corn

Today, after a run date with Jena, we headed downtown to the 1st annual Tampa Bay Vegetarian Festival.  It was my first time at the Curtix Hixon Park, and I was totally impressed.  It runs along the Hillsborough River with the University of Tampa on one side and downtown on the other.   The Tampa Museum of Art and the new Glazer Children’s Museum are next door (which means this park will actually get some use).  It was so nice to see downtown bumping on a Saturday.  With the opening on the museums, local restaurants had homemade signs in their windows “Now open Saturday and Sunday,” when in the past, everything shut down at the end of the work day.


Jena and I enjoyed browsing the booths and sampling the vegan goodies.  My favorite of the day were these chocolate bars that tasted heavenly.  If I was blindfolded and force fed these, I would have sworn I was eating an almond joy and a snickers bar.  I was too caught up in the moment (okay, really just interested in moving onto the next sample)  to get the name of the product, but this google search yielded some great results.

Just like an almond joy, only vegan

Snickers? No, Jokerz! (yes, that's a Z)

Go the the Max Food is who makes these treats, so check them out if you are in need of a yummy vegan alternative to the common candy bar.   I’m just going to throw this out there in case you think like Dave (I introduced y’all in the last post).  Just because it’s vegan doesn’t mean it’s healthy. A cookie is still a cookie.  A brownie is still a brownie.  And ice cream is still ice cream.  Just indulge knowingly.

After sampling, the sun was getting a little strong, so we headed over to Joe’s Patties booth and enjoyed a refreshing limeade.  It was too hot to eat one of their famous grain burgers, but this drink hit the spot.  Joe and his crew had the longest line at the festival.  They were really onto something.  Plus, they used organic lemons and limes for their drinks and served them in eco-friendly cups made from corn.

Joe making the tonic
Families waiting for their juice

Speaking of corn….  Over lunch, Dave commented that everything seems to be made from corn these days!  Our cups and straws said “made from corn” on them.  There is all this media attention around foods made from high fructose corn syrup.  And even those candy bars I sampled earlier had corn in them in the form on corn syrup. (I just learned that corn syrup and high fructose corn syrup are not the same.  Read on.)

So what exactly is an eco-friendly cup made from corn? From Eco Products’s website,

“these compostable cups are clear and are made from an annually renewable resource – corn!  With the same look and feel as clear PET cups, these compostable cups contain NatureWorks PLA, an environmentally friendly alternative to PET.  The cups are odorless, completely non-allergenic and are compostable.  To dispose of them, toss them in a compost bin.  That’s right, our PLA cups will completely compost under commercial composting conditions in just 45-60 days. “

Just to put things in perspective, from the EPA’s website, a plastic bottle lives for 450 years!  450 years! I had no idea. An aluminum can lives for 200 years, and a styrofoam cup lives for 50 years.   

Newspaper
Newspaper
6 weeks
6-pack Ring Graphic
Photodegredable
6-pack ring
6 months
Cardboard Graphic
Cardboard box
2 weeks
Aluminum Can
Aluminum can
200 years
Recycle Recycle Recycle Recycle
Diapers
Biodegradable
diaper
1 year
Diapers
Disposable diapers
450 years
Foam CupFoam cup
50 years
Paper Towels
Paper towels
2-4 weeks
Fishing Line
Microfilament
fishing line
600 years
Reduce Reduce Reduce Reduce Reduce
Wool Glove
Wool glove
1 year
Milk Carton
Waxed
Milk Carton
3 months
Cotton Glove
Cotton glove
1-5 months
Buoy
Styrofoam
buoy
80 years
Cotton Rope
Cotton rope
3-14 months
Reuse Reuse Reuse Reuse Reuse
Plywood
Plywood
1-3 year
Glass
Glass bottles/jars
undetermined
Plastic Bottle
Plastic bottle
450 years
Tin Can
Tin can
50 years
Reuse
Recycle
Reuse
Recycle
ReuseRecycle Reuse
Recycle
Apple Core
Apple core
2 months
Compost

While we were waiting for our limeades, a duo (who I mistook for a bluegrass band at first listen!) was singing songs called “Styrofoam vs. Corn” and “I like animals.”  These songs are on their new album called something like “I’m made from seeds.”  It was pretty entertaining in a bad kinda way.

So I don’t know where I was going with all this, but just an FYI, don’t leave corn cups in your car on a hot day and expect to come back to your cold soda after a few laps around the mall.  This is what happens.

Apparently Eco Product's website warns about heat.

In case you were wondering, here are the stats on today’s run.  Since I don’t feel like uploading my data right now, this is from Jena.   We ran in Clearwater off of McMullen Booth Road – parked at Del Oro Park (blink and you’ll miss it).  I was extremely impressed by the trails.  It was very hilly for Florida, which was weird, and we did have to spend the first 3 miles searching for a bathroom, but despite that, I was very impressed!  I love running in new locations.  I’ve decided to run my long Saturday runs in a new spot each week!

I’ve decided for the half-marathon, a generous goal is the run at a 9:30 pace.  That is more than possible.  Realistically though, I would like to push for a 9:00-9:15 pace.  I would really like to run under 2 hours.  But before I commit, let’s see how these longer runs go.

Tomorrow I’ll do a quick 21 miles on the bike at Flat Woods (3 loops), and then Dave and I are going to the St. Pete Folk Festival.

Sleep well,
Carolyn

PS – I’m too tired to put in links, which I was going to go back and do to some items in this post.  I’ll edit tomorrow.  I just want to get this published and hit the sack.

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3 Comments

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3 responses to “Stryofoam vs. Corn

  1. You were at the Veg Fest too! Awesome! I missed those candy bars…they look good!

    A reporter took a pic of my boys playing in the fountain – the pic was in today’s Tampa Tribune (page 11 of section A).

    Here’s a link to the online version (the 2nd pic). The funniest thing is that we were in the St Pete Times on Saturday (a picture taken of us at the downtown market). What are the odds of being in the paper two days in a row??

    http://centraltampa2.tbo.com/content/2010/oct/02/organizers-hope-veg-fest-takes-root-bay-area/

    Also, check out my friend’s blog about corn. She happens to have a corn allergy, but through her experience with that she has learned so much about the prevalence of corn in ALL the products we consume…. and it’s not exactly a good thing. I’m sure you’ve seen King Corn and/or Food Inc…..

    http://www.livecornfree.com/

    • What a cute picture! I can’t believe y’all were in the paper two days in a row! Funny. I need to make it to the St. Pete market. On Sunday, Dave and I went to the folk festival in St. Pete and it was probably one of the best events I’ve been to in a long time. You should definitely take your family there next year. It is free, too!

      I haven’t seen King Corn or Food Inc. but I’ve read The Omnivore’s Dilemma, so I’m aware of the dangers of having corn in all our food products. It is scary. That is why I aim to eat just natural, whole foods (and even there sometimes they get you with GMO this and that).

      Enjoy your Monday.

  2. Pingback: Tampa Bay Veg Fest | Eat Well. Live Well. Be Well.

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