The Movement. The Planet. Places. Products. PART 2
True to my word, I have spent the last month transforming my kitchen into a plastic-free/ eco-friendly/ composting zone. As I advanced deeper into the zone, I found that I became much more hyper-alert about ALL of the plastic products in my life. Although my home was a plastic-free zone, the market at which I shop for groceries is not. So I found that there are additional steps and product-switches I will need to introduce to stay true to my goal.
HC3’s Jen Cawley pointed out that fresh baby spinach comes in a #2 clear plastic clam-shell. Of course, I can recycle the clam-shell, but it’s better to just not buy it at all, so I switched to fresh spinach bundles. The spinach bundles (when available) are smaller, less expensive and require a little extra effort to wash and trim. Many of our favorite snacks, lunch items, and take-out come in plastic shells of some kind. I am brainstorming a workaround. Ideas?
I go into more detail about the products purchased last month, the delivery and product quality below. Unfortunately, with the current Covid-19 stay-at-home gov’t order, my goal to visit and compare local and regional brick-n-mortar eco-friendly shops was not possible.
Ordering, Delivery, and Pickup
Ordering the products through Amazon was relatively easy. I did find some product companies would not deliver to a P.O. Box and they also could not deliver to my physical address in Breckenridge. I tried two alternative addresses in town, but still, no luck so had to ultimately adjust which product to purchase. I feel like I should mention this even though this happened prior to publishing the previous post with the product list. Amazon Prime delivered to the Post Office and was a few days late. So there was extra time and energy driving to the Post Office and waiting in line.
Stainless Steel Compost Bin – Composting has some great rewards! Forming the habit took some getting used to, and a few times, I found myself digging stuff out of the trash. All-in-all a positive change. With the composting, our kitchen garbage has shrunk considerably. In fact, generally speaking, we have one small bag of trash every 7-10 days. It’s become a personal challenge to create only one tiny bag of garbage every two weeks! We are looking into a trash service that picks up every two weeks instead of once a week. I will keep you posted.
Compostable Trash Bags are just one of the eco-friendly options available. The cost, density (or mil), number of bags, and product material led me to my purchase. However, when talking to the experts, there are many contradicting opinions on which are better compostable, biodegradable as opposed to bags made of recycled material? I like the density of the Green Earth Compostable Biodegradable, GMO-free plant starch, kitchen, and bathroom trash bags. They are easy to tie and don’t feel flimsy. I ordered one box of each and honestly believe I will have enough bags for the entire year. We will see.
The Mesh Produce Bags are light, easy to fold up and store in my purse. This storage method works best for me so that I don’t forget them at home. I like that they are translucent and washable. The only drawback is that if I leave Produce in the mesh bags and stored in the refrigerator, the Produce does not stay as fresh as it would in a (I hate to say it) plastic bag. So I have been using very worn, re-used plastic storage bags when I return from the market to keep the Produce fresh. Re-used plastic storage bags are only temporary, I’m open to any suggestion and looking for alternatives.
The 15 Pack Reusable Food Storage options with silicone storage bags, stretch lids, and beeswax wraps were easy to adopt in the kitchen. I use the beeswax wraps daily to keep leftovers, snacks fresh. A few additional larger size wraps would have been great. The stretch lids go over bowls smoothly and work-great in place of plastic wrap. The silicone storage bags are thick and easy to wash, airtight for freshness, but stiff with less volume. I find that I have to cut my veggies in smaller pieces to fit them in the bags. The closing-slider for the silicone storage bag is plastic (ugh). The sliders have not held up well, as you can see below. I have already had to duct tape two sliders since February.
Overall I am pleased with the products purchased on Amazon and happy to be moving toward a plastic-free kitchen and household. Of course, there were a few disappointments and some self-modification to address, but I’m sincerely working on it and looking for alternatives. For Part 3 of this experiment, I plan to visit the brick-n-mortar eco-friendly businesses and then report back to you on the experience, cost, and product reviews. Until then, if you haven’t already, consider going plastic-free in your kitchen. Save time and go with the products reviewed above or purchase your own. Be part of The Movement! Every little bit helps our planet!
Enjoy the Climb!