This is mainly of interest only to readers in Switzerland or in regions of France and Germany close enough to Switzerland to go shopping here. I couldn’t pass it up because it finally gives me a chance to talk about one of the most practical lines of bento-appropriate containers available, Lock & Lock.
Lock & Lock is a line of sturdy plastic containers that come in all sizes. They are microwave, dishwasher, freezer and of course food safe. The main feature is the locking, sealed lid which is almost 100% water-safe (if you fill it full with water and shake it upside down vigorously, it may leak a bit). Lock & Lock is available all around the world, but I spotted it for sale for the first time here in Switzerland at a 3-MMM Migros  last week. (The MMM Migros in Tivoli-Spreitenbach to be precise. Migros supermarkets, which dominate Swiss grocery and household shopping, come in three sizes: small single-M stores, bigger MM stores, and MMM megamarts.)
They even have the most useful sizes for bento sold together in a 3-pack: 2 360ml boxes, and a 480ml box with two removable dividers. This one alone is perfect for a tightly packed bento, and could be supplemented with one of the 360ml filled with fruit and so on. (That’s another great feature of Lock & Lock - each container is clearly marked on the bottom with its capacity in mililiters, ounces and quarts.)
They aren’t as cute as other bento boxes perhaps, but are very practical. Now that I can get my hands on Lock & Locks, I’m going to experiment a bit with fully frozen bentos and such things…stay tuned!
You may have noticed that the Bento Item Of The Week feature has been in hibernation for a while. I realized that featuring an item every week was sort of encouraging the notion that you needed lots of supplies to make bentos…which is certainly not the case! As a matter of fact, since I am in the process of packing and moving house  right now I’m trying to declutter and streamline my own supply of bento boxes and other items. I have two big Ikea storage baskets full of boxes, cutters and other paraphenalia, and I consider that to be way too much. (And I’m in a big de-cluttering / simplifying my life mood at the moment!)
So, I’ve discontinued the Item Of The Week, but will feature equipment or supplies that are truly worth having periodically. Lock & Lock boxes certainly count as being really worth having, but I’m restraining myself from buying too many!