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Using Less Plastic Update #2

Another month of using less plastic and I can already see a huge difference in our attitudes and lifestyle. But, there are still some areas we could improve in. Our family is not seeking to totally eliminate all plastic but to greatly reduce the wasteful practices we were falling into without thinking.

This is the key…think about what you are purchasing and then how you are going to reduce your plastic consumption before you bring it home.

We have not cleansed the kitchen of all plastic. We decided that since we already owned all those reusable plastic containers, we would use them for now. They will be replaced with non-plastic alternatives when the time comes. For our family, this is a gradual process that will probably take a year to totally figure out how to make it work.

Thanks for all the suggestions from last month in your comments. I appreciate every one and hope you will keep the suggestions coming this month.

#3 Bringing less plastic home from the grocery.
Last month I shared how we are attempting to use all reusable bags for shopping….well, I still forget sometimes. But, I found an answer that is simple and easy…a reusable stuff bag. This bag from Chico Bag unfolds into a full size bag with shoulder straps (Diana’s suggestion from last month’s comments). You can purchase one on Amazon: ChicoBag Reusable Shopping Tote/Grocery Bag.I can attach it to my purse or keys using the clip provided and this way I always have at least one reusable bag to use at all times.

The other brilliant idea that my husband had was to ask at the meat counter and the deli counter if they could wrap our meats in paper rather than a ziplock bag. No problem! The meats come home and we put them in reusable containers at home instead which is one extra step but we don’t end up with plastic bags that we can’t reuse.

If all else fails, take the item without a bag if possible. We have done this at Home Depot a number of times this month and now it seems silly when they want to use a plastic bag to carry out one small item. It is just a bad habit.  (Makita spoke about doing this in her comment from last month.)

It only makes sense to bring less plastic home if we are trying to reduce our wasteful plastic usage.

Have you found a product you like for packaging sandwiches for lunches? Leave me a comment!

5 thoughts on “Using Less Plastic Update #2

  1. I actually made some foldable sandwich-type bags out of fabric that I can wash after usage. If the sandwich in question will be extremely messy, I first wrap it in parchment and then slip it into the bag, then fold the top over to close the bag.
    It’s similar to this:
    I did not use oilcloth though, I used colorful 100% pure cotton that my children personally chose for their own bags out of the stash I already had on hand. Hope that helps!

  2. Hi Barb. Okay, these are not “non plastic”, but they are reusable and inexpensive…ZIPLOC divided lunch containers…there is a spot for an entree (a sandwich will fit) and two smaller spots for fruit (or whatever). If taken care of, they will last for ages. We, too, are trying to cut down on plastic waste. These containers are an exception because they will used over and over again.

    If it makes you feel any better, I forget my shopping bags almost every time…but, I figure even taking them when I remember is better than nothing!

    Have a cheery day.

  3. Mary-Thanks for the link…I have been looking at purchasing some of the cloth bags but I am overwhelmed with the choices. Perhaps I should just whip up a few with some fabric I have and see how it goes.

    Robin-I have a couple of those divided boxes and we use them for salads. His lunch box is not big enough for two (one for his salad and one for his sandwich) so we have been alternating between sandwich and salad. I agree that they are a great solution. Thanks for the encouragement about the bags.

  4. We just overhauled all our kitchen plastic, switching to glass and stainless steel.

    My favorites so far:
    Recycled glass jars!–for everything!
    Glass Snapware containers–for the kitchen
    LunchBots divided stainless steel containers–for packing lunches
    ItzyRitzy zippered, reusable snack bags–machine washable!
    Lunchskins reusable snack/sandwich/etc. bags–for packing all sorts of things!

    (Read more about our own overhaul, and the plastic-free products we love on my blog at

    Good luck with your quest to use less plastic!

  5. I use these againbags and wash them regularly. I could sew them, but b/c I bought on a special offer, these were the most economical choice. I don’t use them for anything but pbj or craisin/almond mix.

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