Mason Jars,  Reduce Plastic,  Zero Waste

Week 5: Find an Alternative to Plastic Bags.

I am being completely honest when I tell you that this is one my favourite ways to be green. I don’t know why. It’s the eco-nerd in me. I started out moving towards tupperware containers to store food at home and then fell in love with mason jars and reusing jars from our usual groceries.

One of the first times that it really hit home for me was watching people use individual plastic bags for all their different produce. I mean, really? But I realized that I was the minority just putting all my fruits and veggies straight in the shopping cart. What’s even worse to consider is that those plastic bags get placed in more plastic bags so you can transport the food to your car!

Here are some amazing alternatives to plastic bags:

  • Glass/Mason jars: As I mentioned, I have a total love affair with mason jars, along with the rest of the internet. If you don’t feel like spend money on jars, you can choose groceries that come in glass. We get most of ours from salsa, pickles, and jam.
  • Cloth bags: you may already use reusable cloth grocery bags to carry your groceries around, but have you considered cloth bags for holding all those apples together? If you’re feeling like taking it to the next level, you can make reusable cloth food wraps!
  • Old containers: So many different items we buy come in packaging that can be reused. Think about your sour cream, yogurt or peanut butter containers. They might not last forever, but it will definitely save you from buying that crappy disposable plastic Gladware.

Finally, there are a ton of commercial products out there that you can purchase to replace plastic bags, from kids lunch boxes to reusable tins, there’s definitely a solution for everyone.

The final tip I have for you is to carry a backpack for those times when you find yourself without grocery bags. Having more space will not only allow you to carry that water bottle and lunch around, but you’ll have room to throw any purchases on the fly. And it feels so good to tell cashiers, “no thanks, I don’t need a plastic bag!”.

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