While you are waiting for your favorite Farmer's Markets to reopen and provide you with great local produce I want to remind you that you can still make great choices while shopping for food that help to reduce your carbon footprint. I am of course referring to those ubiquitous reusable bags we see everywhere. Back in the late 80's and early 90's when a lot of us were in elementary or middle school our Eco conscious minds were being aroused by talk of Earth Day. We planted small gardens at our schools and told our parents to shop using canvas bags. Around the same time we urged our parents to choose paper instead of plastic due to the fact that those convenient bags take up a lot of landfill space. When we tried to convince our elders to make wiser packaging choices we probably heard the argument that canvas bags were expensive or hard to find.
These days the same excuses no longer hold water, or groceries, as it is easy to find reusable bags. The picture up top showcases one from Target. Every store seems to carry them and at very reasonable prices. Last year I even got a slew for free at ShopRite when they ran a promotion. Target has been known to do the same as well. Supermarkets are not the only places where you can find these bags and apparently they aren't just for groceries any more. Even your local Toys R Us carries them now in a variety of pleasing and colorful patterns at just under $2. I have chosen whenever possible to buy those bags and fill them with toys for gifts instead of the standard gift bag that we all know rips easily and gets tossed. I have even encouraged my friends to reuse them to store toys or to give gifts in as well. re-nest ($15), which fold up small enough to fit in a purse cure you of ever forgetting a bag again. For those of you like me who never carry a purse they shove just fine into a pocket. Better yet, make your significant other shove them in their pockets. These bags will forever do away with your excuse not to use eco friendly bags. Don't be like me last Summer at Head House Farmer's Market and get caught without a bag. Imagine my chagrin after I saw Ben and countless others stowing away their purchases in reusable bags and realizing I had 10 at home. After all, we shop local and buy fresh produce because we want to make smarter choices. Asking the vendor to provide you with a plastic bag kind of cancels out your intentions.