Reduce your Plastic Footprint

So-called “disposable” plastic. The wonder of the 1950′s has become a current scourge. Here are some creative ideas to reduce your purchase of packaging and single-use plastics at the grocery store and at home. Put 2-3 big re-useable grocery bags in your car and put up to 10 pre-used plastic bags in them for vegetables, fruits, bulk and other foods. Fabric mesh bags can be reused indefinitely and easily washed in the laundry. Bring your own bottles or containers to the Portland Food Co-op (at the little plaza on Congress and India streets) and refill them with honey, maple syrup, olive oil, dish soap, laundry soap and other cleaners, vinegars and tamari. Glass bowl with lids allow you to store foods without extra plastic in a number of ways. Refrigerating leftovers in a bowl with a plate on top works well. I save all my plastic bags and reuse them for fridge and freezer storage. Plastic yogurt containers and glass jars can be used in the freezer if you let things like soups cool before freezing them, leave a bit of space at the top for expansion, make sure they are upright in the freezer and then put the lids on after freezing. Get creative and experiment! Let us know what you find out! Bonus action: Here’s a link to ask Trader Joes to escape from their plastic dependence!)