July 4th is the unofficial holiday of the paper plate. While many believe there's no such thing as disposable dinnerware that's green, Verterra offers the lazy but semi-conscious an intriguing, compostable alternative made of fallen leaves.
According to Verterra company lore, the founder came upon the idea in India. He saw a woman make an on-the-spot plate by pressing water-soaked leaves in a waffle-iron contraption, then serve a meal on it. In this version, fallen leaves from Southeast Asia are collected, steamed, heated and pressurized under fair worker conditions. While they are reusable, they also biodegrade within 2 months.
Unlike many conventional alternatives, they are also free of artificial chemicals and toxins. You can pop them in the refrigerator or microwave.
The process isn't all that's unconventional. Plates are square or hexagonal, and joined by several serving platter options as well as a round bowl.