Plastic....To use or not to use, that is the question?

I've been reading up on plastic. I would love to stop using it all together, or at the very least cut it WAY back. I have a few questions that I'm hoping some of you wise folks can help me with.

We have some food items that I don't see how to get around using plastic for. We buy cheese in bulk (because it's cheaper) and then shred it. Once it's shredded we put it in plastic bags and freeze it. I'm wondering could I put it in pint or quart jars? Does anyone know? That would at least cut the plastic way down.

We also eat meat. (a lot of the people I've read about doing this don't eat meat or not much at all.) We buy around 50 lbs of beef a few times a year. It comes packed in plastic and then wrapped in paper. Do I have an option to avoid the plastic?

I make my own breads, I put my baked breads into plastic bags..........

Do you all see where I'm going?????? I'm wondering if for me this has to be a situation that I try to cut back when and where I can.......I'm hoping you will all have some great advice for me! Let me hear it!


Sarah February 22, 2010 at 8:24 AM  

Hey, I have wondered about this subject, and blogged a little about it too. The BPAs are in EVERYTHING! What you want to do it look for things WITHOUT BPAs. Like I recently found a Plastic BPA Free Container, to put bread in. Of course it came with a $11.99 price tag. Which MAY be worth it, because it is forever reusable. I haven't thought about it because I don't use it much, but you could PROBABLY do a search and see what companies are BPA free, for like your plastic wrap or baggies. There ARE companies out there that ARE concerned with the BPAs, and have made products that don't contain them.

In the end, you can't get away from them all. Read your packaging. BPA is an abbreviation for a LONG word that contains those letter, you will recognize it when you see it. I did. Try to stay away from MOSt of those, but it is IMPOSSIBLE to avoid them completely.

NEVER heat plastic in the microwave (the microwave is a whole other issue), but heating up the BPAs bring out even MORE of them into your food. TO freeze your meat in them, shouldn't be too bad, just when you want to thaw out the meat, take it out of the packaging. Don't let the packaging get heated up. Same with plastic plates in the microwave. If you must use the microwave, put the food on a glass or ceramic type plate. Bottled water (I shutter at those!). Get reusable stainless steel bottles. Plastic ware to stick leftovers in your refrigerator, there ARE some Rubbermaid containers that are BPA free! The have those listed on their site. Of course these are newer, so if you have had plastic for a long time, chances are they aren't BPA free. I also found stainless steel bowls with lids that I can put things in too. As far as your cheese, you COULD put them in glass jars, as long ass they are sealed good. You could always test it, and see if it is to your satisfaction. But, I am going to try to freeze more in glass...

Sorry so much on the subject. We really try to watch this too. But of course, it is IMPOSSIBLE to avoid all of it. It is in your canning LIDS, it is in all kinds of kids toys, lotions, deodorants, shampoos, toothpastes... Cutting back at least is going to be a benefit. Doing a little can do a lot!

Mominin February 22, 2010 at 9:43 AM  

I try to use as little plastic as possible. I do still use freezer bags . . . I just haven't come up with a good alternative yet. For some foods I will wrap it in foil before putting it in the plastic, which should give an extra layer of protection. (There's probably something wrong with Al. Foil, too . . . I just don't know about it yet).

Jars would be fine to freeze in . . . but I would worry about clumping and the cheese being hard to get out. I suppose if you flash froze the cheese and then put it in the jars it would be O.K.

We've had meat wrapped in just the paper before (maybe from Mike?) but the paper probably had either a wax or plastic lining - I'm not sure which. Although, it could have just been paper, too.

I think it is nearly impossible to avoid all plastic . . . but I just try to avoid as much as possible.

Oh - and I love your new look! Looks great!

Megan February 22, 2010 at 9:44 AM  

Wondered this too?? I use it all the time!

Good ideas Sarah. Waiting for more advice with you Gen, sorry I can't offer any!!

Megan February 22, 2010 at 11:59 AM  

good ideas shannon too! We must have been commenting at the same time!! I didn't see your comment before! I agree you just can't get 100% away from it or at least it would be very hard!

Gen Your new look is awesome. I've been wanting tabs at the top but haven't been able to look into it yet!


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