“Why You Should Consider Reusable Sandwich Bags”

“Why You Should Consider Reusable Sandwich Bags”

Why You Should Consider Reusable Sandwich Bags

The environmental impact of disposable bags

Single-use plastic bags and sandwich bags are major contributors to plastic pollution. Most are used just once before being thrown away. These bags often end up in landfills, oceans, rivers, and parks, where they can take hundreds of years to break down.

Some key facts about disposable plastic bags:

  • The United States uses 100 billion plastic bags per year – most are used for just a few minutes before disposal
  • Less than 5% of plastic bags are recycled – the rest end up as waste
  • Plastic bags are one of the top sources of plastic pollution in the oceans – they can choke and entangle marine animals

Plastic bags and wrappings are also problematic in landfills. They are lightweight and can blow away, further spreading litter. When buried in landfills, they break down very slowly due to lack of air and light.

As someone who regularly packs a lunch or snack in disposable bags, I contribute significantly to this plastic waste problem each year. Making a small change like switching to reusable sandwich bags would really help reduce my personal plastic footprint.

Reusable bags are a sustainable alternative

Reusable sandwich and snack bags provide the same functionality and convenience as disposable ones, but with none of the waste. Here are some benefits of switching to reusables:

  • Greatly reduce your plastic waste – a few bags can replace thousands of disposable ones
  • Save money in the long run compared to constantly buying disposable bags
  • Made from durable, washable materials like cotton, silicone or polyester
  • Many are machine washable for easy cleaning
  • Stain resistant and waterproof options available
  • Reusables come in convenient zipper or fold-over closure styles

Some popular brands of reusable sandwich and snack bags include Stasher, Lunchskins, ZipTop, and Itzy Ritzy. There are lots of options out there in different materials, sizes, and designs. It’s easy to find a reusable style that suits your preferences.

Tips for adopting reusable bags

Switching from disposable to reusable sandwich bags is an easy fix that can make a big difference. Here are some tips for making the change:

  • Start small – buy just 1 or 2 reusable bags to test out
  • Try different materials and styles to find your favorites
  • Designate a space or bin to store clean/used bags
  • Fold or roll bags when not in use to minimize storage space
  • Wash regularly – after 1-2 uses for best results
  • Allow to fully air dry before re-using to prevent odors
  • Consider different bags for savory versus sweet items
  • Double bag or use liner bags for messy foods

It may take some trial and error to find a system that works for you. But soon, packing snacks and lunches in reusable bags will become second nature. The small effort is well worth it for the environmental benefit.

The takeaway

Disposable plastic bags generate tons of unnecessary waste and pollution. As a frequent consumer of sandwich and snack bags, I recognize that switching to reusable alternatives would greatly reduce my personal plastic footprint. Reusable sandwich bags work just as well as disposable ones, and are easy to incorporate into my daily routine with a little planning. This simple change could prevent thousands of plastic bags from entering landfills each year. Both the planet and my wallet will thank me!