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Reduce and Reuse: 4 Kitchen Products for Green Consumers

With a reduction in U.S. recycling programs due to China’s waste import restrictions on plastics and other solid materials, conscientious consumers have turned to the other two points of the environmentally friendly triangle: reuse and reduce. This trend impacted sales in the housewares department in 2019 and is likely to continue in 2020, especially with international companies like Starbucks leading the way.

Here are 4 reusable products that reduce waste for housewares’ consumers.

Reusable Straws: Since Starbucks pledged to eliminate the use of plastic straws by 2020, reusable straws have become a hot item across the country. Strawesome®, a reusable glass straw line that is made in the U.S., offers durable straws in a variety of colors and designs with unique painted flourishes such as turtles and frogs.

Fabric Food Wraps: Used as an alternative to plastic storage bags or plastic cling wrap, flexible fabric squares coated with organic jojoba oil, beeswax and tree resin can be folded around containers and food for travel and storage. One popular brand is Buzzy Wraps™. The natural beeswax food wraps are washable, reusable and compostable.

Swedish dishcloths: Swedish dishcloths are an absorbent, long lasting cloth that offer an alternative to paper towels. Popular brand, Wet-It! cloths come in many designs from seasonal to modern and are sold in packs. They are designed to absorb like a sponge but wipe like a cloth. Wet-it! Cloths offer a streak-free and lint-free finish and are reusable, biodegradable and compostable.

Silicone products: A manufactured rubber, silicone is becoming a common alternative to plastics in the housewares’ category and is being used to make a variety of kitchen items, such as baking pans, ice trays, lids for bowls and cups, cupcake liners, and utensils. Silicone is stain-resistant, non-sticking, oven and freezer safe, dishwasher safe, and is flexible for easy storage. Stasher bags, a well-known silicone brand, offers a line of reusable silicone bags that provide an alternative to plastic bags. Stasher bags come in many sizes and can be used in the freezer and microwave.

About Hans Cummings

Born in Indiana and raised in Indiana, Germany and Virginia, Hans has worked for NRHA since 2001. He has a B.A. in English from Indiana University and is a published fantasy and science-fiction author. His hobbies include cooking, especially smoking meats, tabletop and video games and supporting space sciences and science education.

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