Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Plastic Grocery Store Bags. You have them, now what to do with them?

Though some communities are considering and passing legislation to outlaw them, single use plastic grocery store bags are everywhere. Sadly, we often seem them stuck in trees, bushes, and littering the sides of our roadways. Like many people, even if you are using reusable bags, folks still have a bunch of the plastic ones at home. I personally use reusable bags, but on occasion, I forget them in the trunk of my car, or simply do not have enough to hold all my great grocery deals! So, plastic bags, what to do?

Plastic bags, Uses and Recycling

Some folks use the grocery store plastic bags to clean up after their dogs instead of buying the little plastic bags that are stored in the retractable dog leash. Others will take their store of plastic bags to the recycling can meant solely for these bags at their local grocery store. I don't know what they make out of those bags, but, I'm glad there is less going to a landfill. Another use I have for these bags is for tossing the wrapping and tray* that holds raw meat from the grocery store. *Some communities recycle these plastic trays. Where we used to live in Central Ohio did, here in NW Oregon, they do not. Of course, there's always the option of using them for temporary storage of wet swimsuits, towels, and sandy shoes / toys when coming home from the pool or the beach.

Plastic bags, where to keep them?

My family keeps a "bag of bags" hanging in the pantry / laundry room. This is where any of those plastic bags go after groceries are unloaded. However, I have another idea that I really like on where to store those bags. See, I also use the plastic bags to line the small trash cans that we have in each bathroom, bedroom, etc. I find it annoying to have to go grab a new bag from the pantry when I empty the trash in any of those rooms , so this is what I do. When we have finished a box of tissues, I stuff it full of those plastic bags, then store the reused box-full of bags under the bathroom sink. That way, the bags stay under control in a cute way, and it makes it really easy for me to tidy up in the various rooms. Restock as needed. Who doesn't want an easier job of cleaning up around the house? I even like to keep a tissue box full of plastic bags in the trunk of my car for those wet towels, sandy shoes, etc. that I mentioned above.

Don't forget...

If you do use reusable bags, remember to make sure you're getting your "reusable bag credit" at the grocery store, if you're store does this. It's usually five cents per bag. It's your money, keep it!

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