Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past few years you have noticed the changes in your favourite grocery store.
Plastic vs Paper
Years ago our groceries were packed in paper bags or boxes. To save trees (the popular cause at the time) these tree-reliant products were replaced with the now banned plastic bags.
For a few years, before they were completely banned, we were forced to pay for the plastic bags.
Reusable Cloth Bags, are They Sanitary?
These cloth bags are popular, I use them too, but the retired laboratory technologist in me cringes at the prospect of the bacteria their soft surfaces inevitably collect at a grocery store. Especially when plastic bags were not even available at checkouts for meat purchases. Yuk!
Not to mention the viruses. Did you notice that cashiers were not touching these bags or even permitting them on their conveyor belts during the pandemic?
I disinfect mine often but am willing to bet that many others don’t.
To protect my cloth bags, I also grab an extra couple of plastic bags from the produce department to wrap my meat purchases in.
Reusing Plastic Bags
Most households in my generation or older reuse(d) the plastic bags with a stash somewhere in their homes, garages, cottages etc. In fact, my hubby just joked that we will have to go back to Florida (where plastic bags are still used to package purchases at most stores) to replenish our supply.
We didn’t need rules or by-laws to tell us the advantages of reusing.
Is it my imagination or now that plastic bags have been banned, does everything appear to be packaged in plastic? From bulk items to fresh herbs to fruit.
Some of this plastic packaging is of the sturdy type that I assume would take longer to break down than the flimsy, hole-prone bags we used to pack our groceries in. All of a sudden my blue bin is full of these containers which means more recycling and less garbage at the curb. In turn, this should achieve the goal of less dumping into landfills. Right?
Are we too stuck on banning plastic straws to seek a proactive approach? If the world is so fixated on plastic spilling into our oceans, why not put research into finding an efficient way of disposing of it?
Littering is the Problem
Littering is the problem here. Banning plastic straws, bags or water bottles so they don’t wash up on our shores or litter our roadsides seems somewhat misguided.
Instead, should we not teach our children and grandchildren to be responsible and respectful of the environment by properly disposing of our garbage instead of littering?
Oops, this post was not intended to turn into (another) rant on landfills. Let’s get back to the one about the grocery store changes.
Admittedly, I belong to the less tech-savvy generation that prefers a human cashier to the increasingly popular self-checkout options. Especially for a large grocery order.
I’m guessing those that approve of self checkouts do so for their convenience and speed.
I do too when I have just a few items. My impatient streak has been known to show up in these instances when I’m in a hurry and behind several overflowing carts escorted by those prepared to spend the day in the store.
What changes at the grocery store are you most annoyed with?