Keeping a clean and healthy kitchen goes beyond wiping down counters and washing dishes. While it’s important to keep germs and bacteria at bay, there are more ways that one that you can make your kitchen a safe, sustainable model of excellence that will make your mama proud.
These days, plastic has become a huge part of our daily lives, and the kitchen is no exception. But it’s availability doesn’t necessarily mean it’s safe. In fact, plastic is harmful for both the environment and for people. It clutters landfills and our oceans, harming animal life and causing ocean dead zones. Many plastic food storage containers, while seemingly convenient, can leach toxins into the food it comes in contact with (especially acidic or hot dishes). We’ll pass, thanks!
Fortunately, there are plenty of safe, plastic-free options out there.
Swap #1: Disposable Produce Bags → Chicobag Produce Bags
Starting at the supermarket, you are subjected to opportunities to create more waste and clutter, like the flimsy disposable produce bags. For produce, there are some great reusable options that will not only reduce your plastic waste, but even extend the life of your produce and bulk items.
This ChicoBag starter kit is a great alternative to single-use bags. There are 3 bags, each made of a unique material that is ideal for a specific type of food:
– Restricts airflow and locks in moisture
– Ideal for squash, broccoli, carrots and celery
– Absorbs excess moisture and restricts airflow
– Ideal for grains, nuts and other bulk food items
– Designed to maintain optimal humidity and air flow
– Ideal for apples, oranges, onions and potatoes
The bags roll up and store in a pouch when not in use for convenient storage and are made from durable, machine washable fabrics.
Swap #2: Plastic Grocery Bags → Bonjournal Co Canvas Tote
A sturdy canvas tote can replace the piles of plastic grocery bags. This beautiful bag is made of thick 100% all natural Indian cotton canvas and has a reinforced gusset that allows you to fit tons of fresh farmers market goodies. The handles are reinforced, so you don’t have to worry when you load up at the grocery store, you won’t have a handle #fail. Plus, how CUTE is it?!
Swap #3: Plastic Wrap → Bee’s Wrap
Once you’ve whipped up and devoured your culinary creation, you may have a few delectable leftovers to spare. Instead of stowing away food in plastic baggies and covering dishes with plastic wrap, there are more environmentally-friendly options that can do the job.
Bee’s Wrap is an alternative to plastic wrap, made with organic cotton, beeswax, organic jojoba oil, and tree resin. Using the warmth of your hands to soften the wrap, you can create a seal to cover your favorite foods. When cool the wrap holds its shape. The beeswax and jojoba oil have antibacterial qualities that help to keep your food fresh and allow you to use the Bee’s Wrap again and again.
At the end of your wrap’s useful life in the kitchen, cut the wrap into strips to add to your compost heap, or wrap them around pieces of kindling and use as a natural and effective fire starter.
Swap #4: Plastic Sandwich Baggies → BlueAvocado Storage Bags
One bag replaces up to 300 disposable baggies! These reusable storage bags are meant for use at home or on the go, and can be used for snacks, meals or travel. The transparent design allows for a quick glance at the contents inside, and the double-lock closure provides an airtight seal. (re)zip bags are freezer safe, and wonderful for fruit, sandwiches, and snacks. When not in use, the bags nest and compress flat for convenient storage.
While these sustainable swaps require a small investment up front, the long term health benefits as well as cost savings are completely worth the purchase. You’ll be doing your part to keep plastic out of landfills and oceans while protecting your family from dangerous toxins.