Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Plastic Bag Alternatives

I have often found myself thinking about this subject. When grocery stores around me started selling reusable bags for 99 cents, I purchased 4 from my regular store. I have since added more to my collection- 3 from another grocery store and one from Ace Hardware (it was free with purchase- bonus!). I have come across coupons from various stores giving them away with purchases and offering discounts. In fact, I save 5 cents for each bag I use each time I go grocery shopping. But now I have an additional incentive to start using the reusable bags- not having to pay for plastic bags.

Seattle will start charging 20 cents a bag in January (story at this blog). The City Council recently voted 6-1 to approve charges for grocery, drug store and convenient store paper and plastic bags. That cost can add up quickly.

But I LOVE my reusable bags. I have learned that I can fit what might take up 3-5 plastic bags into one of those reusable bags, meaning less trips to and from my car. In addition, the straps are more comfortable carrying than the straps on plastic bags. And the bags are very durable. I just empty them out and put them back in my trunk so they're handy when I need them.

However, I have found it a little uncomfortable at times to pull out a bag for a store like Albertson's when I'm at a store like Target. So I have started looking for other reusable bags that are more universal (and no one has commented at all about my using bags from their competitors or other stores other than to thank me for bringing in a bag). Some of my favorites I've run across at Amazon (because of their low prices) are these and these. What are your favorites?

Are you already using reusable bags? Do you plan on using them in the future? I'm thinking that this trend will continue, and it's best to be prepared.


TAG said...

I am right there with you! In fact I am trying to decide between a couple of patterns and a few different materials and then I was going to make them for everyone I know for Christmas. Our house was pretty much our christmas gift to us, but I am thinking I'm going to wrap a few presents in them to save the paper. On another "green" front I have started cleaning my kitchen and batrooms with baking soda. It's much cheaper than cleaning products and better for the ground water. In my reading about things to avoid when pregnant it talks about cleaning with vodka and baking soda instead of all the chemicals... there is my 17 cents on the issue... alicia

Travis and Jenny Holloway said...

I wish you WOULD blogger-stalk me! Glad to see that you're a blogger too! Love, Jenny

Becky..AMHW said...

I've used them for a while, though I still put meat in plastic bags.

I ran across a instructions sometime back on how to make grocery bags out of old Tshirts and jeans. You aren't afraid of getting those dirty.

BTW, you won the Gert story. I gots a prize for you.

Travis and Jenny Holloway said...

Good point. =) I guess you can't stalk me now, but we still can keep up on blogger! =) --Jenny

Debra said...

Alicia, I've thought about making some of my own as well. But, unlike you, I'm not crafty at all. So that could be disasterous!

Jenny, I'll still "stalk" you. You won't know where I'm hiding. Just know I'm around.

Becky, sweet! I love winning things. I'm glad my Gert story paid off!

Jeff said...

I think you're right on here - especially looking for the generalized bags. I don't want a pile of these things from various stores in my trunk.

Yeah, meat still goes in plastic - what little I get from the market.