Reusable cotton produce bags, why should you make the switch?
Plastic pollution has entered our everyday vocabulary as we’re faced with the long-term impact of our addiction to single-use plastics. The human desire for convenience has come at the expense of our planet and the plants and animals we share it with. The average American family is estimated to take home 1,500 plastic bags a year when these could easily be substituted with reusable cotton produce bags. Changing our shopping habits really can make a difference.
It’s no secret that our oceans and marine life are paying the price for our addiction to plastic with an estimated 80 percent of plastic pollution entering the oceans from land. Fish eat this plastic and transfer it up the food chain, to the point where we’re consuming this toxic waste without realizing.
Photographs of whales full of plastic and other ocean creatures washing up dead on the beaches are proliferating the internet with good reason. 100,000 marine animals are killed by plastic bags every year, affecting over 267 species. On land, birds and other wild animals often confuse shredded plastic bags as a source of food. The animals are unable to process the plastic and absorb toxins, eventually leading to death.
The most shocking statistic is that a plastic bag has an average lifespan of only 12 minutes. The majority of plastic bags end up in and landfill sites where they take more than 500 years to degrade. Even then they leave behind micro-plastics, which continue to pollute the land long after the bag is gone. That’s centuries of toxic devastation for a few minutes of convenience when we could be making the switch to reusable cotton produce bags.
These single-use plastic bags are responsible for causing monumental environmental damage. Right from step one, plastic bags consume fossil fuels as part of the production process. Estimates suggest that Americans use 100 billion plastic bags per year. To manufacture these many bags takes 12 million barrels of oil, a finite resource that pollutes our planet in numerous ways. In Australia, this increases to 10 million plastic bags per day. It’s heartbreaking and can leave many of us feeling powerless to help, but making a simple change, like choosing reusable cotton produce bags instead of store offered plastic has a much bigger impact on plastic reduction than you might think.
It’s fair to say that our understanding of the devastating impact of plastic bags was previously limited due to a lack of education, but we can no longer hide behind this as a species. Retail giants and other corporations continue to plead ignorance. Many of them still use plastic bags for nearly all of the item’s consumers purchase. However, there are ways to fight back and take control of our own shopping habits and define the legacy we want to leave for our children.
How reusable cotton produce bags make a difference
The first clue is in the title, they’re reusable! They’re also durable, washable and breathable and the life span of just one of these bags is equivalent to 700 single-use plastic bags. That’s roughly 8400 minutes of use, instead of just 12. One person that makes the change to reusable cotton produce bags can remove as many as 22,000 plastic bags from the environment. In the long run, reusable cotton produce bags also work out to be a much cheaper financial option.
Reusable cotton produce bags are made using bio-degradable natural fibers so the impact on the environment is significantly reduced and they don’t cause anywhere near the same issues for ocean-dwelling marine life. The production of cotton bags uses less water, energy, and oil and has much less of an impact on air pollution.
More responsible retail organizations are starting the trend for ‘nude’ shopping which means they’ll be displaying fresh produce without the usual plastic coverings. Cotton produce bags are perfect for bringing these groceries home from the store but also for storing fruit and vegetables when you get them home. Cotton bags are breathable and can be dampened to keep veg crisp, so produce is likely to last longer than when it’s wrapped in unbreathable plastic.
Cotton produce bags aren’t just reusable but they’re also multipurpose. You can use them to store a variety of items like cosmetics, medicine, jewelry and even kids’ toys or practical tools.
Just by making this simple change you’re already on the path to making a difference and making more eco-friendly contributions to our planet. They have the added benefit of adding a touch of style to any kitchen or home environment. In the winter they’re perfect for storing firewood and look great in a basket by the fireplace.
EcoRoots reusable 100% natural organic zero waste produce bags. They’re eco-friendly, washable, geared for zero waste, sustainable, durable and biodegradable. They’re strong double-stitched with tare weight on tags and a stainless-steel cord so you can be sure you're making the right kind of impact on the environment.
Whether you want to save the animals or stop poisoning the land, there are so many reasons to make the simple switch to reusable cotton produce bags. Why not make the change now and start making a personal difference to the natural world we live in.