Last year Hong Kong threw out a whopping 2 million moon cakes, and we can only imagine the grotesque amount of moon cakes dumped by the mainland. This is a shame since moon cakes apparently make really good doorstops and can be re-gifted an infinite number of times as they seem to have the shelf-life of uranium. WSJ reports:
Last year, in Hong Kong alone, residents threw out nearly two million moon cakes, according to a survey conducted by local environmental group Green Power, and similar figures are likely this year.
The dense, palm-sized cakes come studded with anything from lotus paste to salted egg yolk and are the ritualistic staple of the country’s Mid-Autumn Festival, which sees millions of people gifting and re-gifting boxes of the holiday staple. In recent years, the confection has also become Public Enemy No. 1 for green groups, thanks to the mountains of elaborate packaging and plastic that are produced to gild pastry boxes and inevitably thrown away.
“It’s unnecessary for packaging to be so complicated,” said Henry Lui of Green Power, citing mooncake tins that come wrapped in plastic and hold still more individual tins boxing single mooncakes, which in turn are also ensconced in more plastic.
Even with the recent crackdown on extravagant moon cake gift sets, the 280,000 metric tons of moon cakes produced by Chinese factories this year will likely generate a staggering amount of waste on both Hong Kong and the mainland.
[Image credit: @lvsun]