In the fight to reduce plastic pollution, protect wildlife and diminish the use of landfills, sustainable companies are repurposing materials to create produce bags that will give us an eco-friendly tool in this battle. Shopping at sustainable dry goods grocers like Mason and Greens (my local grocer), brings us closer to zero waste by selling and packaging goods with a more sustainable model in mind. Bringing a zero waste produce bag to your local green market brings us even closer to winning this fight.
Benefits of Zero Waste Compostable Produce Bags
For produce bags to be truly zero waste, they must be sustainable and compostable. Zero waste bags don’t last forever but most are very durable for several years. During their life, their durability supersedes that of the typical thin plastic bags mostly used today in conventional grocery stores. Look up your local zero waste grocer here! Reducing those thin plastic bags is just one way to help save the turtles and other marine life.
A zero waste bag that is compostable offers a special benefit to our soils. Enriching them with beneficial nutrients promoting plant life and a healthier cycle of nature. Composting supports the zero waste strategy to help protect the health of communities. Here’s more about composting to learn more!
Other Benefits Include:
- Less impact on air pollution
- Multipurpose for other uses
- Reduction in fossil fuel consumption
- Reduction in methane gas emissions from reduced landfill use
- Reduction in bioaccumulative microplastics
- Cost effective
Best Zero waste produce bags made of compostable material
Some of the best compostable bag materials are plant based such as cotton and hemp. For the cleanest compost, the material should be organic to keep chemicals out of the natural health cycle. Organic products are free of chemical fertilizers, pesticides or other artificial agents.
To help those new to zero waste shopping, here are a few of our best picks to get you started towards sustainability.
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The cotton mesh is durable, washable, organic, unbleached, and zero waste. These Eco Roots bags come in three different sizes, small, medium, and large. Perfect set to get started to see what types of produce you like to put in the different sized bags.
Hemp is leading the way with the most sustainable fabric material on Earth. It did win most sustainable fabric for clothing! This hemp canvas tote is so durable, they have a lifetime satisfaction guarantee if you disagree. This shopping bag is perfect for heavy items replacing the need to double up on those plastic bags we really don’t need floating around the environment. Also, take a look at the benefits of these hemp backpacks!
These extra large totes coming in a set of two can fit a large mesh produce bag and several other dry goods in one bag. The longer handles also make it easier to sling over a shoulder if needed. A versatile strong bag that can be taken camping and to the beach to help carry many items without breaking.
These organic cotton mesh bags are assorted sizes with a drawstring used to put your dry goods in at your local sustainable market such as nuts, oatmeal, and beans. These little bags replace the package containers typically sent to conventional grocery stores.
How To Care For Your Zero Waste Shopping Bags
These bags are durable but they don’t go without care. To keep them living their longest life, they can be machine washed in cold water or preferably hand washed with your most eco friendly detergents of course. Lay flat or hang on a line to try. The dryer will shrink your bags so make sure to air dry them.
Once you feel the bags have given you all the use they can, they are ready to be composted. These heavy duty bags would be better off commercially composted as they might take some time and care to biodegrade. Look up a commercial compost company in your area from Litterless. You can click on your state and they have a list of companies to choose per city.