Category Archives: reusable containers

Bottled Water Waste

It goes without saying that I avoid bottled water.

First of all, I am naturally -shall we say- “thrifty”, and buying a bottle of water when you can get it for free just doesn’t make sense to me. Secondly, I live in Vancouver, and our tap water is awesome.

But apparently many many people disagree with me.  And they disagree to the tune of half a billion bottles of water sold in the US each week (!) according to Annie Leonard.

What the heck is going on? Continue reading



Filed under food waste, reusable containers

Catherine Conway, I Think You’re Awesome

I have found my retail dream!  A package free food shop!

A place where they actually insist you bring your own container.  Where you won’t find plastic bags of any kind, and most products sport words like ‘organic’ or ‘local’ or ‘fairtrade’.  A place where you can get bulk raisins, package-free granola bars, unwrapped cheese, and shower gel and balsamic vinegar on tap! Continue reading


Filed under food waste, reusable containers

Reusable Produce and Bulk Bags

Ok, so I was raving about my favorite mesh produce bags the other day, but, lest you think I work for Moukisac or something (which I don’t), I thought I’d share a little of my research into other bulk and produce bags that are available out there You know, in case you decide to go the plastic-free route. . .

First off I should say I was pretty impressed to see how many North American manufacturers there were out there keeping it local.  Secondly, each bag has its own strengths and weaknesses (for example, the cotton bags are generally heavier than their synthetic counterparts, but then I’d assume they’d be biodegradable at the end of their life. . . .) but it’s fair to say they’re all better than using those flimsy ubiquitous plastic produce and bulk bags. Continue reading


Filed under reusable containers, soft plastics

Moukisacs and Moukinets

moukisac1I spent a year not buying “stuff”, so it may seem ironic that I’m about to shamelessly flog a material product, but I really do think it’s for the greater zero-waste good.

The first thing I bought after we finished our Clean Bin Project year was. . . well, it was actually a secondhand dress for my cousin’s wedding. . . . but, the second thing I bought was a set of Moukinets. They’re a fabulous reusable alternative to those flimsy plastic bulk and produce bags and you can use them for things like sprouting and making cheese too.

First off, they’re handmade in Vancouver, BC (points for local if you live in Canada or the US).

Second, you can put them in the washing machine (points for convenience and cleanliness).

Third, they have a drawstring, which is a feature come other bags I’ve seen are missing. You might think it doesn’t matter for veggies, but when you start buying oats and rice in them, you’ll remember that I said this and be thankful for the drawstring. Continue reading


Filed under plastic bags, reusable containers

Day 222: Indoor Cake Greenhouse

cakeA couple weeks ago, we had friends over for dinner, and they brought a delicious cake.  But not just any cake, a cake that was (gasp) packaged in a hard plastic case!  Of course, we didn’t say anything, and it is curbside recyclable #1 PETE plastic, but we wouldn’t normally buy something in such a large, disposable package.

It seemed like too good of a container to recycle right away (reuse before recycle is always better), so it has been sitting in the “rigid plastics” section of our kitchen recycling center ever since, waiting for an idea.

Well, this morning I had a great idea for reusing it: indoor greenhouse! Continue reading


Filed under Around the house, reusable containers

Day 217: Fast Food Meltdown

wendysI like to think of our Clean Bin Project as a competitive support group.  Each of the three of us has our bins and are personally vying for the “least landfill trash generated in a year” title, but we also support each other and make sure we’re on track and making good waste decisions.

That’s why personal vacations are dangerous.  You’re support group is not there when you need them.  Temptation is everywhere.  Especially, as it turns out, along the highways of Idaho and Washington where fast food joints jostle for advertising space and strip malls dominate the landscape.

Grant went away for a week “with the boys” in the United States and came back with unmistakable evidence of a fast food binge.

Continue reading


Filed under food, food waste, reusable containers