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August 02, 2006


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Thanks so much for this post. I just got back from Indonesia, and I saw a lot of the same thing. I recycled while I was in England, but living at home with my parents in Alabama, it's not that easy. You have reminded me that I need to make the effort.

Sam Davidson

Right on. We use those things for like 6 minutes and they take like a million years to disappear (after winding up in a sea turtle's stomach).

I wrote about this same thing on one of my sites:
Take the Bag Back.


I don't know about Publix, but Kroger has recycling bins for plastic bags. I use the U-Scan, stuff as much as I can into as few bags as possible and on my next trip, I put them in the bin.

And at Wild Oats, I take my own bags with me to use.


I reuse my bags. I'm famous at the local Trader Joe's for this. I have the rattiest bags in the place. Some from Christmas a few years ago... but as long as the handles stay put.

Most of the time I use a backpack. I just load it up at the checkstand and walk home. Although I'm getting very tired of Albertson's so am thinking of going to the Vons up the street... which would be a long walk.

And I re-use the plastic bags that cereal comes in to hold other stuff. Why use things just once, when they can be used until they're worn out? Oil won't be cheap for much longer, and plastic is made from oil. Not to mention the environmental fallout.

Kate O'

Don't forget that you can always bring bags with you, whether they're the same plastic or paper ones you got last time or some sturdy canvas jobs -- that's up to you. We keep about 10 canvas bags in our car's trunk and use the canvas bags whenever we go shopping. We do sometimes forget when we walk to the Kroger three blocks away and the canvas bags are still in the trunk of our car, which is still parked in front of our house... three blocks away. But as others have pointed out, if you take the plastic bags from Kroger, you can bring them back there for them to recycle.

On the other hand, something else to bear in mind about the brown plastic bags Kroger and some other stores use: some sources say that roaches have been known to lay eggs in them, and you may be unwittingly bringing those eggs into your home. Best thing to do? Get rid of them immediately. If you forget to bring your canvas bag to the store and you have to take groceries home in a plastic bag, you should probably just throw the bags out right away unless you can store them outside to take back and recycle the next time you shop.

(Oh, and I recommend washing the canvas bags pretty regularly, too, to keep them clean for the food.)


Thanks everyone for the support and the suggestions. I didn't even know you could recycle those plastic bags until this morning, when I was looking for pictures of plastic bags. And I didn't realize I could just take them back to Kroger until one of ya'll said so. Thanks!!

Cool beans. Time to get rid of the ones I got and get some canvas bags instead.

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