It is common knowledge that your kitchen is where most plastic bags and plastic products are used in the household. However, there are many ways to transform our kitchens into eco-friendly spaces.
You could carry a cloth bag, preferably made with old bedsheets or pillowcase, to grocery stores. Plastic containers that are used to store powders or masalas can be avoided. However, it is not possible to replace everything at once. You could allot a small amount in the monthly budget to buy 5-6 glass or metal jars. Slowly you could replace all the plastic containers with jars that are not harmful to nature. Disposable glasses, plates, spoons, plastic leaves, napkins, plastic wraps or cling films and plastic/paper straws are completely avoidable.
These are some of the non plastic items that could make your kitchen beautiful and eco-friendly as well:
Silicone lids can easily replace cling films or aluminium foils that are used to cover or wrap food. These lids that are available in many sizes are super stretchable and easily fit onto the mouth of the bottles or dishes. Besides, they are reusable. Silicone lids are available online and cost between Rs 119-300.
The beeswax wrap made by coating natural beeswax and other ingredients on a piece of cotton cloth is an eco-friendly alternative. Like the plastic wrap, these, too, can be twisted, turned or folded in any shape. Moreover, you could wash these wraps and use again. It is easy to purchase them online for Rs 400 onwards.
Hundreds of garbage bags are used in a single kitchen for disposing waste in a year. Biodegradable plastic bags made using decomposable materials could be used for this. These are available in various sizes from Rs 299 onwards on the online sites.
Plastic straws often clog the drainage and flows into the seas from the rivers. The fishes would then swallow these plastic straws causing widespread threat to the marine life. Instead of plastic straws you could use stainless steel straws. The ones sold on online shopping sites come neatly packed in jute bags and with cleaning brushes as well. They are available from Rs 200 onwards.
Always carry separate cloth bags for vegetables and meat when you go shopping. Cloth bags are washable and reusable.
Cloth napkins could replace the paper napkins in the kitchen. You could wash them and use again.
Plastic cutting boards are not just harmful for the environment but for our health. Wooden cutting boards in various shapes and sizes are available in the market. The prices start from Rs 250.
It is better to avoid disposable plates and cutlery that have plastic coating. Now, plates that could be burned after use are available. Besides, plates and cutlery made with wood or dried palm, too, are becoming popular. A single piece of plate costs Rs 5. Meanwhile, packs of 100 forks and spoons costs Rs 120 each.
Store curries in fridge in glass dishes instead of plastic containers. Glass containers are available in many shapes, sizes and colours. A single piece costs between Rs 275 and Rs 835.
The pantry is another spot where plastic rule in the house. Glass jars and containers that can store up to 10 kilos of items are easily available. A 500 ml glass jar costs Rs 78, while 250 ml jar is available for Rs 49. You could buy a glass container of 150 ml for Rs 35. Meanwhile, it would cost up to Rs 158 for the glass jar that could hold one and half kilos and Rs 135 for the one that contains a kilo. The price for the 750 ml jar is Rs 110.
Glass water bottles too are available from Rs 30-65.
Instead of plastic bottles, you could carry stainless steel water bottles to schools or offices. Stainless steel water bottles are available for Rs 594-646.
Similarly, stainless steel jars could be used to store rice or wheat flour in the pantry. Price: Rs 186, Rs 262.