Just in case you missed all the recent hubbub about BPA and receipts here is a little recap.
Last summer the Environmental Working Group found very high levels of bisphenol-A (BPA) in paper receipts from supermarkets, automated teller machines, gas stations and chain stores. In some cases, the total amount of BPA on the receipt was 1,000 times the amount found in the lining of a can of food (another controversial spot for big levels of BPA).
Why BPA on receipts is an issue
BPA from the receipts can rub off onto your hands, skin and mouth and can be absorbed into the body. BPA exposure has been linked to many health problems, including cancer, obesity, diabetes, and early puberty.
How to limit your exposure to BPA on receipts
Ever since this study was released I have been very diligent when handling receipts. Here are a few guidelines:
- Don’t take receipts if you don’t need them. I only take receipts I need for tax purposes or possible returns. At the checkout let the cashier know that you don’t need the receipt.
- Wash your hands after handling any receipts. Be aware of what you are touching-your mouth, the steering wheel etc….
- If your job requires that you handle receipts wear gloves.
Kudos to Nordstrom
I am not a shopping mall fan. They give me a headache. I go only when it is completely necessary and I try to get in and out as quickly as possible. Today was one of those days; I needed to make a quick trip to the mall.
One of my stops was Nordstrom. Known for their excellent customer service and high end fashion, they didn’t let me down. I found what I needed (my kids are out growing everything so I found a few things for them and a few for me) and went to the checkout. My purchases were placed in my reusable bag . I was just about to let the cashier know that I didn’t need the receipt when she asked me for my email address. Nordstrom is transitioning to emailing receipts.
Could it be? No more wasting endless amounts of paper on receipts? No more touching BPA laden receipts?
It takes 15 trees, 19,000 gallons of water, and 390 gallons of oil to make a ton of paper. Sometimes a store will print two receipts-one with an itemization of my purchases and the other with the bill total. What a complete waste of paper.
Once I left the store I checked my email and there it was…..an emailed receipt from Nordstrom. As a side note-I have a separate email account for retailers to control spam.
Big round of applause to Nordstrom and any other retailers that have transitioned to emailing receipts. What a simple solution to the BPA on receipt issue. It’s time for everyone to switch and have paper receipts be the exception, not the rule.
Would you be willing to have your receipts emailed? Do you know of any retailers that are already emailing receipts?
[Top photo used under Creative Commons from Brad Montgomery/Flickr]
[Nordstrom photo used under Creative Commons from Hans van de Bruggen/Flickr]