12 Best Reusable Grocery Bags
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How many plastic grocery bags do you get when you go to the grocery store? Usually, this is when your plastic usage hits an all-time high during your week. Single-use bags are efficient, but they’ve significantly contributed to pollution.
Every year, people use about 500 billion plastic bags throughout the world. This means, on average, one person uses about 83 single-use plastic bags every year. Unfortunately, these bags are difficult to manufacture, and they end up in landfills, streets, forests and the ocean. One study found plastic in 100% of the sea turtles the researchers examined.
It takes hundreds of years for a bag to break down. Even then, it leaves behind microscopic particles that end up in food systems.
Fortunately, some states and grocery stores have banned plastic bags. Others have added a five- to 10-cent charge on each one a shopper uses. That alone can be enough to prompt someone to seek other options.
You can be part of the solution to the plastic bag problem by opting for reusable versions, which limit your waste and are much better for the environment. Instead of putting your groceries into 10 plastic bags each time you go to the store, you can buy a reusable grocery bag and use it over and over. They’re often sturdier, too, meaning your items won’t break through like they can with the thin plastic.
If you’re looking to take a step toward sustainability, check out these 12 best reusable grocery bags.
BagPodz makes bags out of nylon, and each one holds up to 50 pounds of groceries. Each pod holds five reusable shopping bags. They fit neatly into a pouch, making them easy to fit into a purse or a cubby in your car so you never forget them when you go shopping. It even includes a carabiner clip that can attach to a purse or set of keys. You should be able to fit all your groceries in these bags. Additionally, if anything spills or stains, they’re machine washable.
BeeGreen reusable bags can hold up to 50 pounds each. These are also machine washable and come in unique carrying cases. They come in multiple patterns and colors, making your shopping experience fun. You can also purchase these in a set of five.
If you need sturdier reusable grocery bags, Planet E has you covered. They are made from recycled plastic bottles, making them more environmentally friendly than other brands. Each one offers plenty of room for your groceries, and they stay upright, ensuring your items don’t shift on the car ride home. The only downside is that you have to spot clean rather than throw them in the washing machine.
Baggu reusable shopping bags are all about style and functionality. They come in fun patterns, and they’re one of the tougher and more durable bags on the market. Each bag can hold 50 pounds, and they’re machine washable. Additionally, they’re made of 40% recycled materials. They fold up in seconds and can be stashed in your purse for easy access when you’re grocery shopping.
These bags will make you feel like you’re in a French market. The French Net market bag is made of a netting material that allows your groceries to breathe while you carry them through town back to your home. When you’re not using them to carry groceries, you can hang them up as decorations in your kitchen. They come in two sizes and multiple colors.
Lotus Trolley Bags sit directly in the shopping cart, meaning you don’t have to move them until you get to your car. They hang over the sides of the shopping cart so you can put all your purchases inside. Each set includes four totes that can hold 50 pounds each. One of those is insulated to keep your cold products cold.
Earthwise reusable grocery bags are perfect for larger families that tend to have big grocery store purchases. These bags come in a three-pack, and they’re cotton, which ensures they stay sturdy. The straps are sewn all the way down into the bag for extra stability and durability. Their simple design is effective for any grocery haul.
The Capabunga Farmers Market Tote is your all-in-one bag for grocery hauls. Thanks to the canvas material and the vegan leather lining the bottom, it’s sturdy and durable to ensure no groceries are left behind. This bag has a few different compartments, keeping heavier items separated from the more delicate ones, like bread, eggs and flowers. The tote would also be great for the beach, keeping your sustainable swimwear, snacks and towels separate.
If you’re looking for a single bag that you can stow away for on-the-go purchases, this bag is for you. The ChicoBag compact reusable grocery bag is just that — it folds up into a small carrying pouch and hides away in purses, glove compartments or even your coat pocket. Even though the carrying pouch looks small, it expands to a large bag that can hold up to 25 pounds of groceries.
Let’s face it — sometimes, on busy grocery shopping days, you need to make multiple stops at different stores. Some reusable grocery bags just aren’t cut out to keep your cold items cold, which is why you need something like the PackIt freezable grocery bag. It is one of the best bags to keep foods cold. Fold it up and put it in your freezer before you go grocery shopping. It has a freezable gel that stays cold throughout the day to keep your refrigerated items cool.
Another great insulated reusable grocery bag comes from VENO. When you’re making a full grocery trip, you want to keep your refrigerated items cold. Standard reusable grocery bags won’t do the trick, but you should still use them for other foods. It’s a super durable bag and is made from recycled fabric. It holds about 30 pounds and has a zipper top so items will stay cooler for a longer period.
The Clevermade SnapBasket Luxe grocery bag is either insulated or non-insulated. Get one of each for all of your grocery needs. This canvas tote holds up to 30 pounds of groceries. When you don’t need to use it, it folds flat to less than 2 inches. The durability and adorable woven fabric make it great for any shopping trip.
One Step Closer to Reducing Plastic Pollution
Switching to reusable grocery bags gets you one step closer to being sustainable. While you’re in the grocery store, look for items with less plastic packaging, too, to further eliminate your environmental footprint. Reusable grocery bags are durable, better for the environment than plastic and can inject a sense of style while you shop. What’s not to love about all that?
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About the author
Starting from an early age, Jane Marsh loved all animals and became a budding environmentalist. Now, Jane works as the Editor-in-Chief of Environment.co where she covers topics related to climate policy, renewable energy, the food industry, and more.