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November 7, 2012
Hi, everyone. I have had some progress this week. Of course, I have discovered lots of plastic all over my house and that I use in my daily life. It's absolutely frightening how much plastic can overcome our lives. I have decided to start small, though.
1) I search my closets and found that I already had a couple of canvas tote bags. One is small and the other large. I can use both for produce bags, the small one for stuff like apples and the big one maybe for lettuce and kale bunches. I will search around thrift shops and places like that for more canvas tote bags or other things that will work. I don't have a sewing machine, so I am not sure how I would sew any. Hmm.. I also have several pseud cloth looking bags that I use for shopping every week.
2) My second victory was in one of the containers I regularly use to take lunch to work with me. It is a Rubbermaid brand plastic container with a lid, but it is the only one I have that will fit my lunch box. So, I did a lot of searching online and found that Pyrex makes a container of the same size that would fit. I had seen some at Big Lots of the same size weeks ago and went there to get them, but they were all out of them. I would kind of rather buy something used so I am not contributing further to the landfills. I refuse to shop at Mal-Wart. I went to three thrift stores/flea markets, but I found a Corning Ware 2 3/4 cup container with a plastic lid that will work fine to replace the Rubbermaid container. My only other choice was a 4 cup Pyrex container at the grocery store, but it was too big to fit the lunch box. So, as soon as the dishwasher is done, I will put the old plastic container in a donation bag to be taken to a thrift store that benefits the humane society. I will look for another Corning Ware container, because I do still have another plastic container to replace, but I only had enough money for one today.
3) I refused plastic grocery bags at every store I went to since Wednesday. I did get a paper bag at one, because I did not have my bags with me. Shame on me.
I did use my pseud fabric shopping bags and canvas produce bags for all my shopping on Friday and Saturday.
4) I have a stainless mug (inside and out) that I have had for years. I use it to make my hot tea at work. It keeps it hot, but it is not good at keeping anything cold and it sweats if I put anything cold in it. So I still need to find an alternative to that, as my supposedly BPA free plastic reusable cup is not going to cut it.
However, it has not all been roses. I am gluten intolerant, allergic to milk, and cannot consume msg, so my diet is very restrictive. I don't eat tv dinners and have not eaten them in years. Some of the food I eat and other products I use is packaged in plastic without any alternatives. For example:
1) Bob's Red Mill Gluten Free Oats. This is the only brand of gluten free oats locally available. Even if we had a store with bulk bins, I can't use them because of the risk of cross contamination. I would love to be able to use Quaker Oats or something, but it is cross contaminated because the company uses the same equipment to process their wheat products as they do Oats.
2) New Wave Enviro Premium 10 Stage Water Filter. The replaceable filter is plastic and when in use, is in a plastic housing. I use this filter because of specific recommendation from my alternative health care provider to remove all the nasty stuff that is in our local water. http://www.vitacost.com/new-wa.....-cartridge
3) Almond Milk from Blue Diamond or Silk. I also sometimes use Rice Milk from Rice Dream. All of these are produced in paper cartons that are probably coated with plastic. They are the only dairy free alternatives I have and Blue Diamond and Silk are both non-GMO.
4) Roland's Quinoa. This quinoa is packaged in a plastic bag that is inside a box. http://rolandfood.com/#vxJzV8dcJ
5) Kitchen Basics Broth/Stock. This is one of two brands of broth or stock that has no msg or gluten in it. There is another brand packaged in glass that is called Better Than Buollion that claims to be gluten free, but I doubt it because it has maltodextrin in it, which can have wheat, corn, or potatoes. It also has msg in it. http://mccormickgourmet.com/Pr.....00046444c2
This is just a beginning of my list of things I have no idea of what to do about, because I have searched and searched and searched since 2010 just trying to find something I could actually tolerate eating. I, too, am uneasy about plastic packaging, but am not sure what to do about it. Does anyone else have any similar problems? What did you do about it?
I contacted Bob's Red Mills's Customer Service about their products. This is copy and paste of most of what she said.
"Thank you for your inquiry. Plastic is our standard for smaller retail-sized bags. Our bulk bags, most of which are 25-pound bags, are made out of heavy-duty paper. You may place your order on our website or call our customer service line at (800)349-2173. We are open weekdays from 8am until 5pm Pacific time."
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