Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Would you hand me a receipt, please?

Inspired by a misinterpretation of "Napkin Vouchers" idea title.
  (+26, -5)(+26, -5)(+26, -5)
(+26, -5)
  [vote for,
against]

Most fast food and home delivery restaurants give you a receipt for your purchase; a receipt that most of the times we simply throw away.

The idea is to have these establishments print the consumer's receipt ON napkins, with [AO]'s napkin printer [link] and an environment-friendly soy-based ink[link] to prevent any intoxications from using the printed side of the nakpin.

Customers are allowed to request a standard paper receipt if they needed one for expense reports, etc. (thanks waugs!).

This way, less paper is wasted, less garbage is produced by big fast-food chains, and people is educated into a recycling culture, mostly in countries where people are not aware of the importance of making good use of the world's natural resources.

Pericles, Oct 28 2004

Napkin printer http://www.halfbake...ea/Napkin_20Printer
[Pericles, Oct 28 2004]

Napkin Vouchers http://www.halfbake...a/Napkin_20Vouchers
The idea's title I misinterpreted [Pericles, Oct 28 2004]

(?) Soy ink historical summary http://www.soyink.com/inkhistory.html
Even adds into the environmental spirit of the idea [Pericles, Oct 29 2004]

[link]






       Sure, here you go. +
sartep, Oct 28 2004
  

       Super! [+] Just so long as it isn't laser-printed . . . I hear that toner has mercury in it.
contracts, Oct 28 2004
  

       I think tuna has mercury in it, too. Or some other fish. Not sure which.   

       Anyway, nice one, [Pericles].
Machiavelli, Oct 28 2004
  

       Halibut.
contracts, Oct 28 2004
  

       Nice one, Pericles. Two birds, one stone.
lostdog, Oct 28 2004
  

       this is a good idea - but in application it makes the problem worse.   

       Firstly a napkin printer would need to sit on the table top next to each cash register, and this would prove to be an additional thing to keep clean where food is being served. Admittedly money is being handled anyways, but if u look closely at the keys on the cash register they usually have a complete plastic sheet that covers the entire interface which i assume is to stop bits of food getting in there over time. Printer parts being clogged with week old french fry pieces is gross not to mention the extra time required for repair and cleaning.   

       Secondly as [Machiavelli] pointed out and discussed in the Napkin Printer idea - the ink to mouth situation would need to be resolved. The person serving would in theory be required to ask the patron if they would like a 'clean' napkin as well as their printed one in case of any objection/possible ink reaction etc. In time I don't think anyone would use the printed napkin, instead throwing it out to use a clean one, making it redundant except for perhaps an educational statement.   

       In consideration of the required infrastructure of a point of sale printer with specially developed ink - when people are going to throw them staright into the trash anyways - I don't think this idea makes good use of the world's natural resources at all.   

       Keep the already paper efficient recipt, and just ask for one napkin instead of five.
benfrost, Oct 29 2004
  

       //Secondly as [Machiavelli] pointed out and discussed in the Napkin Printer idea// I did? [contracts] mentioned the mercury bit in one of the annos above and I commented (yes, halibut, thanks [contracts]). I wouldn't call that "discussing." I guess I'm just not the type of person who takes credit where it isn't due.
Machiavelli, Oct 29 2004
  

       <of subject> OH MY COD! <os/>   

       In working with printers I know that ink is not something you want to get on your hands, especially while eating. Try saving those pieces of paper that wrap around your napkin and silverware inside the napkin and ask your reciept to be printed on that at the end of the night.
MrDaliLlama, Oct 29 2004
  

       [Machiavelli] - what i meant to say was that you pointed it out here, and that it was discussed in the Napkin Printer idea.
benfrost, Oct 29 2004
  

       I've never been given a receipt in a fast food establishment in my life, except when I specifically asked for one (eating on expense account etc.) and this seems, to be fair, by far the better solution, no wasted paper, no new infrastructure, no worries about poisonous ink, nobody accidentally using their receipt to wipe their greasy hands with without realising they'd got the wrong...   

       I'm new here, so I'm not handing out fishbones yet, but I think this could do with one :(
SammyTheSnake, Oct 29 2004
  

       //I've never been given a receipt in a fast food establishment in my life, except when I specifically asked for one (eating on expense account etc.) //
Mr or Mrs Snake, you have clearly not yet fully grasped the true purpose of the expense account. Repeat after me "I'll have the lobster thermidor, please."
calum, Oct 29 2004
  

       Pericles, please tell us how the authentic El Maco is prepared south of the border.
FarmerJohn, Oct 29 2004
  

       I think he means a Mexican McDonalds.
angel, Oct 29 2004
  

       A Scottish Mexican?
skinflaps, Oct 29 2004
  

       Oh! Mc Donald's! Well, I don't know if you've traveled outside the US. If you had, you would know that McDonald's is exactly the same in every corner of the world, except for the prices (I couldn't afford a McMenu when backpacking in Switzerland) and the seasonal specials. Here, we've had hamburgers with guacamole, another one with a chipotle chili sauce... and instead of mustard and mayo, we get jalapeño and salsa dressings.
Pericles, Oct 29 2004
  

       //McDonald's is exactly the same in every corner of the world//
??
Even within the US I've seen differences at different Mcdonald's, like lobster sandwiches, etc.
brodie, Oct 29 2004
  

       I don't think that not printing a reciept on a 1" x 2" piece of thin paper, and instead printing it on a 3" x 4" folded piece of paper will waste less. I think few if any will actually use the napkin reciept for it's other intended purpose.
As it is I rarely use the napkins that come with my take-out, prefering the higher quality that you get with paper towels.
brodie, Oct 29 2004
  

       //Even within the US I've seen differences at different Mcdonald's, like lobster sandwiches// That's exactly what I meant by "seasonal specials". Refer to my previous anno.   

       //I think few if any will actually use the napkin reciept for it's other intended purpose// Just because you say you wouldn't (not even giving a reason) doesn't mean the rest of the people won't use it either. After all, it's a napkin.   

       For those worried about dying from touching their lips with a printed napkin, I'm sure using soy-based ink won't cause so much terror [linky].   

       I don't really understand why people insist on seeing a negative side to this. It would bring more pros than cons.
Pericles, Oct 29 2004
  

       There is no problem with the ink, since edible ink exists and is used in fast food packaging and printed icing. However, it would make it possible for discarded napkins to be used fraudulently. In a busy restaurant, someone could and use a napkin to "prove" they had bought unsatisfactory food, so i can't agree with this.
nineteenthly, Oct 29 2004
  

       A few months ago, I found a McDonalds receipt dated 1993 in the glovebox of my brother-in-law's car. I took it to McDonalds, and told some lad at the counter that I was dissatisfied with the big mac I purchased eleven years ago, and wondered if I could get a refund. As with all pranks like this, nobody cared.
spiritualized, Oct 29 2004
  

       Actually, this could be combined with the "Book of Lawsuits".
nineteenthly, Oct 30 2004
  

       Don't see what the problem is. Subway uses printed napkins to show their nutrition facts of their products. This is just taking it one step further.   

       I would add the option to allow customers to request a standard paper receipt if they wanted one (some folks actually use those for expense reports, etc).   

       // In a busy restaurant, someone could and use a napkin to "prove" they had bought unsatisfactory food, //   

       You're going to have to explain that one in a bit more detail, I think.
waugsqueke, Oct 30 2004
  

       I usually put a receipt somewhere secure and take it home. Less anal people would probably throw it away. However, i don't think it's common to throw a napkin away or take it with you. Consequently, a napkin which is also a receipt, i.e. evidence for a purchase, is likely to be treated as a napkin, not a receipt, as it won't be a small piece of clean paper but a large greasy or food-covered piece of paper, and so is likely to be left on the table. If the table is not then cleared, the next customer who sits there then has a piece of paper they can pick up which could be treated as proof of a purchase. They could use that to claim their meal was unsatisfactory and claim back the money, which might be several times what they spent.
Besides this, suppose it's a business expense. You then have to take a stained, revolting piece of paper back as an indication of your payment, which may then have to be filed, photocopied or stored so it can go through the books. The filing cabinet would have to be refrigerated. The option of a normal receipt may be available, but is everyone going to remember that option every time?
nineteenthly, Oct 30 2004
  

       // If the table is not then cleared, the next customer who sits there then has a piece of paper they can pick up which could be treated as proof of a purchase. //   

       Insofar as anyone would bother doing something like this, it's possible now with regular receipts. Therefore this isn't a negative aspect of Pericles' idea and, I think, is an unfair criticism.   

       I say "insofar' because I don't think it happens very often, at least not often enough that the fast food chains have determined action must be taken against it. So if it does, big deal.   

       In fact, I would think malefactors would be more likely to do this using current clean receipt slips than "large greasy or food-covered... stained, revolting piece[s] of paper". So it should actually lessen the practice.   

       Regarding your second objection, I've already suggested that Pericles make regular receipts available on request for just that purpose. If purchasers who require one don't remember to ask, then tough luck. That's a user problem, not an idea fault.
waugsqueke, Oct 31 2004
  

       OK, i'm changing my vote to a + because i actually like the idea of being able to screw a fast food chain in this way.
nineteenthly, Oct 31 2004
  

       Thanks for the + [nineteenthly], but that was so not the purpose of this idea.
Pericles, Nov 04 2004
  

       It's not rare that an invention's ultimate common use is not the use the inventor intended.
bristolz, Feb 06 2005
  

       Ha! My vote makes it a double-bun!
DesertFox, Feb 06 2005
  
      
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