The New Zealand Government banned single use plastic shopping bags in 2019, but this DID NOT include produce bags.
You know the ones…. those thin, shiny things on rolls dotted through the fruit and veg section at the supermarkets….!!! If you’re like me and buy LOTS of loose fruit and veg, your trolley could soon fill up with these single use plastic bags.
Plastic bags are incredibly dangerous to marine life in particular. They frequently blow away from landfills and are easily mistaken for ‘food’.
What Can I Do..??
Get yourself some reusable shopping bags and a set of produce bags. Keep a foldable shopping bag in your handbag for emergencies and a set of heavy duty shopping bags for groceries in your car or by the front door to make sure you remember them.
Produce bags are lightweight and lots of them are stretchy so they can easily accommodate all your loose produce. Keep a set (you’ll need at least 3) with your shopping bags so you never forget to take them with you. I put all the bags into one which can help you keep track of them. I can tell you from experience that they can be quite easily lost…
In general though, try to avoid all fresh produce that comes wrapped or packed in any kind of plastic. Lots of fruit and veg comes with its very own natural packaging anyway (e.g. oranges, bananas, avocados….) so there is no need to add more.
Go the Extra Mile
If you are handy with a sewing machine, make your own!! Produce bags are easy to make with some upcycled net curtains or lightweight, sheer fabric. Here is a great tutorial from WasteMINZ.
Join the Boomerang Bags movement!! There are community sewing bees held regularly by local Boomerang Bags groups so go along, learn and contribute!!