A couple of weeks ago the Attainable Sustainable Facebook community was discussing this article about plastic. In a nutshell, the article states that BPA-free plastic may not be any safer than the BPA-laden stuff we’ve been using.
The plastics industry is the third largest manufacturing industry in America. Can I trust these folks to be straight up with me about the safety of eating food from plastic? My money’s on “no.” But while I haven’t flocked to snap up the BPA-free alternatives because, why, BPA-free sounds almost like a health product, I still use way too much plastic. It pains me to admit that, but it’s true. At least until last week it was true.
That Facebook conversation prompted me to finally say, “enough.” While we do store a fair amount of food in glass, our collection of plastic containers make it all too easy to just keep using them. I stopped buying plastic zip top bags quite awhile ago; if we don’t have them in the house, we have to figure out an alternative. I figured the same would be true of plastic containers, so I gathered up all of the Tupperware, all of the sour cream containers (some used over and over again until the print has worn off), all of the Ziploc brand plastic containers. And I got rid of them.
We’ve had some grumbling about the new plan, but for the most part my guys are adapting quite nicely. Beyond the fact that our food is no longer ensconced in plastic, I’ve noticed another benefit: with everything in clear glass, it’s very easy to see what’s in the fridge and leftovers are much easier to manage.
I’m not promising that I’ll never bring another plastic container home – our local artisan goat cheese, for instance, is sold in plastic containers – but I am making sure that I’m bringing food home in plastic containers less frequently. And instead of continuing to use those containers for food storage, potentially exposing my family to the chemicals found in plastic, I’ll recycle the containers immediately. It’s not ideal – ideal would be the ability to get everything I buy in glass – but it’s a change I think is worth making.
What long-ingrained habit are you working on changing?
Photo: Flickr user JodiWilcome