Our latest shipment of test strips arrived the other day. I opened the box to put them away but stopped, puzzled. These boxes were smaller, about half the size of the usual ones. Maybe there were twice as many boxes of 50 instead of the usual number of boxes of 100? A quick count told me no, there were the same number of boxes as usual. Dreading what I presumed would be an unpleasant call to customer service, I investigated further. Was I missing something?
Indeed I was. Once I peeled off the label which covered most of the new box, I discovered the secret. This box held 100 strips just like the old ones.
They'd put 50 strips in each vial instead of the usual 25. I happened to know this was possible. When we've traveled, or gone on long, strip-intensive day trips, I've always combined two vials of strips. It's good insurance against running out somewhere inconvenient. It saves us digging through the diabetes travel box trying to find another vial at 2 a.m. the night we arrive at grandma's. There's probably some reason the strip manufacturer would discourage me from doing this, but it's worked for us.
While fewer trips to the closet to get a new vial of strips will be very convenient for our family, this change makes me particularly happy for another reason. This change means half as much waste. We're tossing half as many strip vials and recycling boxes half the size for the same amount of product.
Kudos to One Touch for packaging strips this way, and to our mail order pharmacy for sending them this way. The amount of waste diabetes creates in our household continues to bother me. I'm grateful for any changes to lessen the environmental impact of managing this disease.