Is your reusable grocery bag making you sick?
How can a bag make anyone sick, you ask? Well, it's easier than you might think. And it's changed how I think about which shopping bags I use when I go to buy my meats and produce. Food-borne illnesses develop in the fabric of reusable bags whether they are water-resistant, cloth, recycled plastic or polypropylene bags. There is cross-contamination when produce, raw meat, fruit and other goods are carried together in the same bag. Regularly cleaning reusable grocery bags will keep your family safe.
Bring your own
Many, if not all, supermarkets are requiring you to either bring your own bag, buy one of their reusable bags or purchase paper bags when you get to the cashier. What was once automatic, single-use plastic grocery bags at the register, are now gone.
This, of course, is a good thing, even a great thing! It makes me happy that the stores at the local level are taking this issue seriously and change was fairly swift too. It's amazing what a grassroots groundswell can do to make corporations change a policy that was ingrained for so many decades.
You all are making this happen so give yourselves a round of applause.
How do you choose the right reusable shopping bag?
Habits are changing and whether we like it or not, we must take notice of these changes and do our part to improve our systems. Reevaluate what's been done and see how it affects the larger community even if those effects are far away from where we live.
So what does this have to do with the idea of whether shopping bags are healthy? Well, here's the thing, reusable grocery bags are not all considered equal. There is quite a range of possible bags to use when headed to the farmer's market or produce aisle. We all must not ride the wave mindlessly, not that I think you are doing that🙂
Choose long-lasting options
On the market today are reusable bags that can last through several uses until they rip or tear because the material is flimsy or the items are too heavy for it. Tears happen quite often and most people will simply throw that bag away and buy another flimsy bag to replace it. So let's say you get maybe 5-7 uses out of that bag and you typically shop once per week.
That means that every 4-6 weeks you must buy another reusable bag or approximately 8 times per year. Multiply that by an average of 3-5 bags needed per shopping trip and that starts to add up, regardless of the fact that it's super annoying to try to bring in a full bag that has a big rip in the seam and stuff keeps dropping on the ground. Ick!
Why store brand versions don't work
Ok so let's say that you find a bag from your local grocer that is made out of recycled material and is not going to rip so easily. That's great! It's great until you learn that those bags harbor bacteria in them that you can't see.
Bacteria grows from small drips and bits of produce and crumbs, etc that can accumulate in the bottom of the reusable bag. We don't see it so we don't realize how gross the inside of the bag is.
We are so proud that we're doing our part to remove single-use plastics from our daily lives, but what we don't think about is that the bacteria living in the bags can harm our own health! That's not so great.
Clean reusable shopping bags
Are reusable shopping bags washable? It's pretty simple actually. The best reusable shopping bag is one that can be washed over and over and over again and still maintain its durability and strength over a long period of time. Wash your reusable cloth bags either by hand in warm soapy water or in the machine wash on a gentle cycle with your laundry. Line dry to keep the fibers strong over time.
If you can add your reusable grocery bags to the washing machine and really get them clean then the bacteria are removed and you can feel more confident that you won't get sick from the bag.
Simply toss your reusable totes into the wash with your other clothes. It's easy and can be included in your weekly laundry routine. Not only are you preventing potential health issues but you don't need to keep buying bags which is also better for the environment.
Make the right choice for your family with a durable, hygienic reusable tote
Luckily we can offer you a solution to this problem. Our Bosisi Designs Shopper Bag Totes are the most durable, sturdy, washable, reusable bags you will find.
Week after week. Month after month. Year after year. These bags are huge, beautiful, unique and long-lasting. Won't you give one a try?
Directly improving underserved women's lives
On top of the fact that a Bosisi Shopper is THAT good, it is directly helping underserved women in South Africa to help lift themselves out of poverty. Can you say the same for your local grocery store option?
Do something healthy for you and uplifting for hardworking underserved women.
Buy a Bosisi Shopper Bag Tote - you won't be disappointed!