As restaurants and cafes start to reopen across the country, preventing the spread of coronavirus is top of mind. But is BYO cutlery really a thing?

Imran Din thinks so.

He’s the co-owner of Melbourne-based company Just Utensils, which launched a month before the outbreak with a small range of reusable and dishwasher-safe cutlery sets in convenient carry cases.

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“It gives people the option to take cutlery with them to their favourite eateries,” he says.

It’s unclear if venues around the country will allow customers to use their own knives and forks. In Victoria, for example, customers can take a KeepCup to their local cafe but the venue need not accept it, while in New South Wales KeepCups remain banned. And recently released hospitality guidelines in Victoria do not address whether BYO cutlery will be allowed.

But the idea for Just Utensils came about before a pandemic swept through the country. The set is ideal for picnics. Or if you’re just one of those people who always remembers to take cutlery to work but never remembers to bring it home. And, with regional travel now (or soon to be) allowed in most states, they’re perfect for outdoorsy adventures, day trips and camping.

The set includes a knife, fork and spoon, plus a pair of chopsticks. And they come in beige, green, light blue and pink (matching lunchboxes are in the works).

On top of the hygiene and on-the-go benefits, they’re an environmentally friendly alternative to single-use cutlery (flimsy plastic knives and forks, or those very woody-tasting eco spoons).

The sets are made from 100 per cent polypropylene, which is completely recyclable – unlike similar products marketed as “eco-friendly”, many of which Din says use a blend of wheat and polypropylene that can’t be recycled.

Currently manufacturing is done overseas because of the high set-up costs, but the plan is to centralise the operation in Australia when business grows.

Just Utensils is currently online-only, but from June 1 it’ll be trialled at Melbourne restaurant Henry and the Fox, where diners will be able to buy a set to use and take it home afterwards.

The cutlery sets cost $17.95 each, and you’ll get 20 per cent off when you purchase more than one. Nationwide shipping is free.

justutensils.shop