At our farmers market in Oakland, Blue Chair uses metal spoons for tasting, which they collect and wash every week. (Side note, the Blue Chair preserves are really delicious--worth checking out if you're in the neighborhood). However, most of our favorite frozen treat shops still rely on the traditional plastic tasting spoon.
Enter EcoTensil, the fast-composting, flat-packed, paper spoon. It's not suited for your tomato soup and grilled cheeses at home. But it's perfect for tasters at the ice cream shop or anywhere there's a need for single-use spoons.
Business 101 lesson: I don't know the details of this "aha!" moment, but EcoTensil is pursuing a secondary market of prisons and psychiatric facilities. This is a problem I haven't really thought much about, but it makes perfect sense: In a place where even a plastic spoon can be shaped into a weapon for harming oneself or others, a paper spoon is a great solution.
Images from EcoTensil. Via Cool Hunting.