One of my favorite spots at our local Whole Foods Market is the bulk food isle. I love filling endless amounts of containers (at a bargain price of $9.99/lb) with all sorts of grains and snacks, while simultaneously hoping that a previous customer didn’t sneeze in the bin. Yesterday I was in the bulk food isle filling up my plastic containers and plastic bags with all sorts of goodies when a woman passed by gathering her own collection of bulk treats. As her cart cruised by I peered in and noticed that she had several reusable containers and bags to transport her nuts, oatmeal and rice.
She scooped her bulk oatmeal into a bag that looked just like this (but empty):
I then glanced into my own cart only to find lots of fresh fruits and vegetables (I needed to supplement what was already delivered to us by our CSA) bagged in those ridiculous plastic bags off the rolls. All of my bulk foods were also in plastic bags or plastic containers. There were so many plastic bags and containers in my cart that I could hardly see what was what.
I then began to question my dedication to bringing in my own reusable bags each time I shop. I am committed to bringing them with me, but find myself filling those reusables with fresh produce and other foods wrapped in single use plastic bags. Our Whole Foods stopped using plastic bags at the checkout, but continues to have them available throughout the store for produce, meat and bulk foods.
Should I add reusable produce and bulk food bags to my supermarket routine?
I know I have to be realistic-it has literally taken me years to figure out a system where I can actually remember to bring my reusable bags into the store. My system isn’t fail proof, but it does work on most visits to the market. Now I am contemplating adding a new dimension to my reusable routine-bringing in my own containers and bags for the food before it is placed into my reusable bag at the checkout.
If I do decide to change-up my routine and add reusable bags/containers for produce and bulk foods, I’m just not sure what container or bags to bring. Here are a few ideas:
I like this glass container because it’s not plastic. But it could shatter at some point during my bumpy trek to or from the market.
This plastic container could work. It is originally from Whole Foods but could be used as a reusable container for other food.
I could also invest in a few Organic Cotton Reusable Produce Bags. They aren’t very expensive and they could be stored inside the other reusable bags that travel with me to the store.
I’m just not sure I can handle adding anything else to my supermarket routine.
Do you bring in your own containers or bags for fruits, vegetables and bulk foods? I need a little help here.
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**Top photo used under Creative Commons from BCMom