According to Statistica, total food sales in the United States total nearly $1.5 trillion per year as customers make 1.5 trips to the grocery store per week, spending more than $100 per trip.
With all those trips to the store there are scores of plastic grocery bags used. In the United States alone, 100 billion bags are used per year with the average person using between 350 and 500 per year. The Environmental Protection Agency says that only two percent of plastic bags have been recycled in the past decade. On top of that, plastic are only used for about 25 minutes on average.
That also means that a lot of these plastic grocery bags end up in the trash, which does a great deal of harm to the environment. Plastic bags can take as many as 1,000 years to degrade and the bags breakdown into smaller toxic pieces which end up in the ocean and harm the food chain. In fact, plastic bags make up more than 10 percent of the debris that washes up on U.S. shorelines and more than a million birds, 100,000 turtles and other animals die every year from ingesting plastics.
So what can be done to help the environment and cut down the use of plastic bags? One easy solution is to use reusable grocery bags, which have numerous benefits over regular plastic bags.
- One person can remove more than 22,000 plastic bags from the environment by switching to reusable bags
- The average reusable bag has a lifespan that equals more than 700 plastic grocery bags
- Reusable grocery bags are sturdier than plastic bags, which rip easily
- A few durable reusable bags are easier to carry into the house than numerous plastic bags
- Even if you spill food in a reusable bag, the mess is contained to the inside of the bag, rather than the inside of your car
- Reusable bags are more hygienic
- Bagging in the checkout lane is faster an easier with reusable bags
- Many reusable bags are themselves made from recycled materials, which reduces waste
Reusable grocery bags come in all shapes and sizes and are made from durable cloth, cotton or even synthetic fabrics, ensuring that customers can use them over and over again. They’re easy to find too. Many a neighborhood grocery store has reusable bags available for purchase with their logo, sometimes right at the checkout, making them easy to find and purchase.
Many stores also offer program points and discounts for using reusable bags. Paying for three or four reusable bags up front can pay off for many reasons, not the least of which is having them on hand at stores that don’t offer any kind of grocery bags.
While plastic bags may be the easy go-option at the grocery store, they rip easily, aren’t used much and have all kinds of negative effects on the environment. Not only do plastic grocery bags take forever to break down, they end up in the ocean, affecting countless animals and littering dozens of shorelines. Reusable bags provide an environmentally-safe option and have numerous benefits for customers. They can make a weekly shopping trip easier, can be transported easily and are widely available in many stores.
Are you ready to make the switch to reusable bags? They are offered at countless sites online, but Amazon, Discount Mugs and Totally Promotional are good places to get started.