Sunday, October 25, 2009

Reusable Produce Bags

In trying to live a "greener" life, I notice that our grocery shopping trips use a lot of plastic and a lot of packaging. I have been trying to buy less produce that is packaged (ie Trader Joe's-- which I LOVE for other things) and trying to buy our produce from a local market called Monterey Market that sources many organic local farms. It has been very eye-opening to learn what is seasonal and to try and cook more seasonal local fresh veggies. I have found they taste better and are cheaper.
But I digress. We use the plastic produce bags for kitty litter, but seem to have extra. So, after reading about them in "Sew & Stow" by Oppenheimer, I decided to give re-usable produce bags a try.
To make these, I used an old sheet. I cut it into pieces that were mostly 21" by 15". I hemmed the long edge and then folded them and made an inner seam and turned them inside out. I made a LOT of them, and some were smaller (hey, for chilies or something).

We took them to the store and used them this weekend. They worked fine as we were going around the store. When we got to the checkout, they also worked fine, although some had gotten wet from other produce that hadn't been bagged. Unloading the cart went a lot quicker than usual, because I bagged more than I usually do (I often just put loose items in the cart to save on bags). The checkout lady didn't flinch, and just peeked inside each bag. The bagger took a little longer because he had to look inside the bags to see what was delicate and what wasn't.

When I was checking out, I saw that they had re-usable produce bags for sale. They were mesh and had drawstring closures. They were 4 for $10. The mesh would be nice because they would probably dry faster, and you'd be able to see what was inside.
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  1. I can't wait to make mine!!!! Such a great idea. I have an old sheet that I might use, instead of buying flannel.

  2. I bought some mesh material last week and made some and they work fine.

  3. Did you have trouble sewing the mesh?



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