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Offer: Time to stop using plastic produce bags too!

When I was in the Darfur region of the Sudan I was shocked beyond words to see attached to the branches of every tree and bush pieces of shredded plastic bags. "Is this the legacy the Western World has brought to the world?" I thought. I had already switched to canvas shopping bags years before but until then had not thought carefully about how many plastic produce bags I was using on a regular basis. When I returned from Darfur, I made a conscious effort to avoid using plastic bags of any type when I went shopping, especially in the grocery stores. What I did at first was to simply put my produce into my shopping cart and bags "bare." This was not a good solution as sometimes the produce would roll around and some would get "squished." Recently, while pondering how an alternative could be produced I came up with what I consider to be the perfect solution--lightweight and see through net bags with drawstring tops. I sat down to my sewing machine, and made some prototypes for friends to try out. The response has been uniformly positive both from users and from check-out clerks. So, many days of sewing later and an official website, the bags are now available for you the world to try out! I told my daughter recently that I would like to make money on these (of course) but at least I will have a place in paradise held for me. Keeping plastic bags out of landfills and off the trees and bushes of all countries is the passion that keeps me sewing, sewing, sewing. I have a website: www.l-bag.com. The cost is very reasonable and the bags will last and last and last. Looking beyond and forward! Louana

Comments

JMKELLAM's picture

I hear you

Louanna,

Thank you for sharing your thoughts with us. I had a similar experience in the outskirts of Kenya and was saddened to go into Nairobi and see so many plastic bags in use. There is no excuse for this. A reusable bag is $.99 and you can get $.03 to $.10 back on every purchase where you use your reusable bag.

In friendship,

Jenna Kellam

louana's picture

Every little bit helps

Jenna,
Thanks for your plastic "witness" and your comments. For those who have reusable shopping bags but sometimes forget to take them on their shopping trips but who also remember to bring them and use them--that is a good step forward.
In the end, however, we will all need to step up and change our habits for our resources to be better used than for making and throwing away plastic bags.

Louana

Anna Tennis's picture

Thanks for caring about this!

Thanks for caring about this! Good for you for making and marketing an alternative. I've wondered about how to keep produce fresh in the refrigerator when they're not in plastic bags - any thoughts from anyone on this? I usually re-use plastic breadbags and so on in order to keep my produce fresh. I wonder if the mesh your bags are made of would do the trick.

Blessings!

louana's picture

can the bags be used in the refrig?

Anna,
I think refrigerators are set up to have enough humidity in the produce drawers to make it possible to store your produce without a plastic aid (bag or container) which means the L-bag would do the trick. However, I haven't (boo-hoo) been able to have the bags do that for me in my refrigerator. I have always transferred my produce which needs to be refrigerated into Tupperware which keeps everything fine. The L-Bags are great for bulk grains and beans both for transport and for storing!!! (bonus).
Louana

LindsayHowells's picture

Perfect

I just bought L Bags for everyone in my family for xmas. Great stocking stuffers! Thank you Louana! What a great idea!

Lindsay

louana's picture

Christmas stocking stuffers

Lindsay,
And I thank you. I think they are perfect for stocking stuffing as they are lightweight and can be folded small enough to fit any stocking size!
Louana

louana's picture

reusable produce bags

Lindsay,

I would love to have your feedback on the reusable produce bags. I'm working on having them available in all natural food stores and can use all of the feedback possible to enhance and strengthen my product.
Thanks,
Louana

LindsayHowells's picture

Fantastic!

I think that would be a great idea to get them in natural food stores. I think other grocery stores would be interested too. I know at least here in Portland even stores like Safeway are selling reusable bags. Everyone I gave your bags to at Christmas loved them. They thought it was a great idea. I kept some for myself and I love them. The only problem is that I forget them sometimes when I go to the store. I have a full size reusable bag the folds in on itself and then little straps wrap around it and snap (like an umbrella kind of). It is so small that I just keep it in my purse all the time so I never forget it. Maybe if your bags came in a little stuff sack or something that would keep them small and together, it would make it easier to keep them with me. Thats my only thought on the bags. I think they are fantastic! Good luck and let me know if there is anything I can do to spread the word here in Portland.

Lindsay

Lindsay

"If there is no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to one another."
Mother Teresa

louana's picture

feedback

Thanks for the feedback--the bags are small and lightweight enough they could easily be incorporated into a stuff sack.
I did have a large order from a person who runs a farmer's market in California. If you know of a farmer's market that would like to carry these instead of plastic bags, have them contact me for wholesale prices. Thank you again. Good to have your support.
Louana

Maria de Chirikof's picture

great ideas

I would love for the stores to use these instead of plastic bags. I do buy the reusable ones but usually find myself at the store and my bags at home. Drives me crazy and we now have over a dozen bags. It would be a very good idea and I think most stores would embrace the idea to have that option if they could get it in bulk and a steady supply. I know I would not mind paying an extra .03$ when I forget mine at home since I do love saving that amount when I remember them!

Great solution and I look forward to seeing it spread!

Maria

louana's picture

Getting them out there!

Maria,
Thanks for your great response! I had the same problem when I was switching to canvas shopping bags--bags at home when I went shopping. I finally decided that my canvas bags needed to be thought about in the same manner I think about my purse, wallet, and keys. Before leaving the house I make sure I have them all with me and if I didn't use my bags they get to live in the trunk of my car rather than in my kitchen :).
I am working on making the bags in bulk so I can market them to the stores as the first option for produce and plastic bags the "behind the counter" option. In the meantime they are readily available through my website: www.l-bag.com.
Can I use your words as a quote on my literature?
Louana

Maria de Chirikof's picture

Sure

Hi Louana,

Sure, you can use my comment as you like. I am very glad that someone is offering a solution for us! What we have done is put a few into the back pocket of my carseat so it is out of the way but I know I have a few with me.

Maria

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