Plastic bag reuse

November 25, 2008

Old shopping bags become bin liners. We do not ever buy bin liners.

Smaller plastic bags from the supermarket or greengrocer wrap vegetables in the refrigerator, but also serve in place of gladwrap to cover food before serving.

More sturdy bags are used to gather the recycling. They are also handy for packing clothes on a car trip. Suitcases are hard to stuff in the boot, while plastic bags squish happily. Small carry bags make ideal rubbish receptacles, and I try to have a few small plastic bags in the car for emergency use.

On longer trips with a suitcase, plastic bags segregate dirty clothes from clean.

Ziplock bags from the bulk food section of the supermarket are washed. Then we reuse them in lunchboxes, to seal small opened packets, or (my newest discovery) to marinade or brine meat in (you use a lot less marinade that way).

Of course where we can we use a tough bag of our own, eg at the market, or at Pak’N’Save. So we don’t get as many plastic grocery bags as we might, but enough pile up through incidental purchase that we still have quite a collection (stored in another plastic bag, naturally).

I cannot recall paying actual money for a bag for quite some time.

How do you reuse plastic bags?



  1. How do you reuse plastic bags?

    Soiled disposable nappy containment devices. I firmly believe that “What to Expect When You’re Expecting” should be more correctly entitled “Start Collecting Plastic Bags Away Now!”

  2. Actually, we’re pretty much always in need of more supermarket bags. We use them for pretty much all the uses above. One point I’d make – it’s worth having a couple of sturdy cardboard boxes in the boot of the car, for trips to the market/supermarket (particularly Pak & Save). P&S give away their old boxes for precisely this reason: try to do your shopping off-peak so there are still some left. 😉 Plus, the kids love playing in/with cardboard boxes.

  3. And one other point – the new biodegradeable plastic bags aren’t kidding. We went up to my mum’s bach a while ago, after it’d been empty for a bit, and all the plastic bags behind the kitchen door were halfway biodegraded already. Completely unusuable – the plastic had deteriorated to the point where they fell into tatters as soon as you touched them. So someone’s doing something right making these things, anyway.

  4. Transporting soiled/wet kids’ clothes – I always take a couple with me on family outings.

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