Thursday, July 28, 2011

Healthy Homemaking Series: Bring Your Own Bag

Baby Step 6: Bring Your Own Bag

Challenge: Use re-usable bags instead of plastic grocery story bags.

Why: 500 billion to 1 trillion plastic bags are used every year worldwide (statistic from Reuse It).  An aspect of greener living is better stewardship of the earth and cutting down on waste is part of that.  I'd say that this is a pretty big source of waste.

How: I have always reused any plastic bags I end up with as garbage bags for the bathroom and bedroom.  This gives them another purpose before they are thrown out and prevents me from having to buy "garbage bags."  If a bag has a hole in it or something else to make it unusable I make sure that it ends up in the recycling bin, not thrown in the garbage.  I think what makes the biggest difference though is using re-usable cloth bags in place of plastic or paper grocery bags when shopping.  They've greatly risen in popularity with nearly every store selling them in all sorts of colours and styles.  I have gotten all of mine free by either having them be given to me from friends/family, receiving them when making purchases through companies like Pampered Chef, or having them provided to take home leftovers from a restaurant.  Everyone wants to get in on the free advertising.

President's Choice bag.  Clearly I shop at Superstore.

I have also taken it another step by replacing the plastic bulk and produce bags you find at the stores with re-usable mesh bags as I have written about here.

Mesh produce bag.

Cloth "shopping bags" are great for many things besides shopping too.  I use mine often for picnics, beach trips, and transporting pretty well anything really.  The mesh produce bag could even double as a delicates wash bag in the laundry.

What do you use your cloth bags for?


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