The last time you went to a Japanese restaurant, did you use your chopsticks? Maybe, maybe not. But if they were on the table, they got thrown away after you’d paid your bill and walked out the door, and most likely you thought nothing of it.
In the U.S., disposable wooden chopsticks are not very common — except in the occasional restaurant serving some type of Asian cuisine — but in Japan, they throw away 68.5 million pairs of disposable, wooden chopsticks every day. That’s 25 billion pairs (and 100,000 tons of wood) literally up in smoke in Japanese incinerators every year. More