Conventional food storage options, such as single-use cling film and plastic bags, contribute to harmful pollution and environmental degradation. Despite this, these “convenient” options often take precedence over their sustainable alternatives, but this doesn’t have to be the case. Sustainable food storage options are just as convenient as single-use options, if not more so, and are better for the environment, the quality of the stored food, and your wider health.
In this article, we explore some of the best eco-friendly food storage ideas that can help you to reduce waste and minimise your carbon footprint, both at home and on-the-go, as well as the health benefits of switching to sustainable food storage.
1. Reusable Containers
High-quality reusable containers made from glass or stainless steel mean you can store fresh food, leftovers, snacks and preservatives without the need for single-use containers, wraps or foil. In addition to this, studieshave found that certain chemicals in plastic can leach into the food and beverages that we consume. This can ‘occur even faster and to a greater degree’ when plastic is exposed to heat, such as microwaving your leftovers. Thus, glass or steel containers are also the better option for our health. With those in mind, here are some other benefits of reusable containers —
Reusable containers are designed to provide airtight and leak-proof protection, keeping your food fresh and safe for consumption.
Reusable containers come in various shapes and sizes, making them suitable for a wide range of food and drinks.
Designed for easy storage and transportation, such as having ergonomic handles or being stackable.
Made from durable and long-lasting materials.
Long-term cost savings if looked after between uses.
Before you invest in new containers, think about what you own; air-tight glass jars and clean takeaway boxes keep your food fresh, and can be used over and over again. If you are buying new, look for containers that are plastic-free, leak-proof, and microwave-safe.
2. Beeswax Wraps
Beeswax wraps are the perfect alternative to cling-film or foil. Made from organic cotton, beeswax, jojoba oil and tree resin, you can use beeswax wrapson most food, with the exception of raw meat and fish. As well as being better for the environment, beeswax wraps are more breathable than cling film which means that your food is kept fresher for longer.
You simply use the warmth of your hands to mould the wraps around the item you want it to contain, such as —
Bowls, plates, containers, open bottles and jars.
Fruit, vegetables, salad leaves, greens and herbs.
Sandwiches, wraps and baked goods.
Cheese blocks, wedges, or slices.
Nuts, dried fruits, and trail mixes.
Freezing portions of food.
You can also use your beeswax wraps to cover non-perishables when you’re on the go, such as your soap bar or toothbrush.
3. Cotton Produce Bags
Although supermarkets have begun to remove plastic bags for fruit, vegetables and bakery items, it isn’t unusual to see a plastic produce bag in your local shops, or to be wondering what you can use as an alternative when there are no bags available. Reusable produce bags, often made from organic cotton, are the perfect option for storing your fruits, vegetables, bakery goods, grains and nuts.
Reusable and durable, for near unlimited use.
Breathable to keep your food fresher for longer.
Holds heavier loads than plastic.
Comes with toggle closures to keep your produce secure.
Biodegradable at the end of their life.
4. Silicone Bags
Similar to beeswax wraps, food-grade silicone bags are another popular alternative to plastic bags or cling film. These durable, reusable and chemical-bags have gained significant popularity in recent years for environmentally conscious individuals who want a sustainable food storage option. The benefits of silicone bags include —
Won't crack, harden or crumble if looked after well.
Airtight seal to preserve freshness and prevent leaks.
Food-safe and odourless.
Recyclable at the end of their life.
5. Reusable Coffee Cups
Compared to single-use, reusable coffee cups have a much lower impact on the environment if used 10 to 40 times. To get the most out of your reusable coffee cup then, you should refill it indefinitely so that little to no disposable coffee cups need to be used.
Studies show that glass cups are also better for your health, as plastic leaches harmful microplastics when it comes into contact with hot liquids, whereas glass does not. Some other benefits of reusable coffee cups include —
The insulation "traps" hot or cold liquid inside for longer-lasting drinks.
Eligible for discount schemes for bringing your own cup.
Prompt to make your own coffee at home.
Perfect for spill and leak-free travel.
Easy to clean between uses.
Wild & Stone'smission is to create stylish, easy to adopt and usable alternatives to common plastic products around the home. We source all our products sustainably, from raw material to final delivery. Shop our sustainable home & lifestyle products on our website.