In an effort to make my home environment more green, I am boycotting plastic food containers. I have been reading about the possible harmful effects of the chemical BPA (Bisphenol A), and that the chemical could promote breast cancer cell growth in people. This information is scary, particularly when your grandmother has fought breast cancer. For more information about the effects that this chemical can have on the human body, see Scientific American.
I am not into chemicals being leached into my food, so I have decided to take as many precautions against this as I can in my kitchen. One of the ways in which I am doing this is by using glass containers with metal lids for food storage.
I have been collecting canning jars of all sizes, and use them regularly even though I do not actually can. I get them at auctions and yard sales, and many are given to me by people who no longer can. How do I use the canning jars?
- On the food shelves: I store pastas, rices and other foods in canning jars to keep them fresh and to prevent ants from getting to the foods during the spring and summer months.
- Refrigerator storage: I put leftovers in the canning jars. They are fine for a day or two, and won’t last much longer than that around here anyway.
- In the Freezer: Did you know that you can freeze milk in canning jars as long as you leave a little head space?
I use other jars as well. For instance, to save money we purchase pickles in gallon size jars. These jars are great for food storage. I use other jars from our food purchases as well. My ‘fruit’ cups, put out by Polar, are small glass jars with a serving of fruit in them. These little jars come in handy for storing things like herbs, spices and small portions of leftovers. Salsa jars are also great food containers.
I do not have all of the answers to storing foods without the use of plastic, but I am learning things all of the time. I research and pay attention to what others are learning, and I try to come up with my own solutions.
As you can see, I am not only using less plastic. I am also reusing common everyday items, without spending a lot of money to replace all of the plastic that we have been known to use in our everyday lives. Even small changes matter.
So, what am I doing with all of the plastic that I am deleting from my kitchen? I am giving it away to whomever wants it all. In this way, I am not throwing it into the landfills and creating less waste.