Saturday, September 26, 2009

All the Cool Kids are Doing it!

Ideal Bite gives bite-sized ideas for healthy, light green living.

When I first began greening up the place about three years ago, I signed up for Ideal Bite. I've enjoyed it ever since. They send free little tips for things one can do to live a more sustainable, healthy lifestyle. They're funny, too. I especially love to check their coverage of specific cities before I travel; it's always good to know where I can get local organics and natural spa treatments whenever I'm on location! Oodles of Toodles, Kitty.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

More Biodegradable Picnic Products

There are times when you just can't feasibly feed a huge crowd (or even just a big one) using proper plates, napkins and glassware: field trips, scouting & sporting events, parties beyond your china capacity and the like. So you use the paper plates and plastic cups and sporks, feeling guilty for denuding a forest for your fete. Never fear, Kitty is here with the latest in biodegradable serving products.
As seen in an earlier post, corn plastic can be used to make disposable cups. Utensils can be made from a similar starch product, Spudware or bamboo. I have seen sugar cane products at the store as well. Some food manufacturers are even packaging with such eco-friendly choices. I guess I could get my miso soup anywhere, but I prefer Annie Chun's for the bio-bowl. Personally, I think disposables are terribly wasteful, and plastics aren't for everyday culinary use - but I don't feel as wasteful knowing my container won't be around long after I am not! Restaurant owners please take note of the new options in take-out supplies!

Sugar cane bowls from Gaiam

Plates, also made from sugar cane fibers left over from extracting the juice from the plant.

Spudware made from plant starches makes an eco-difference!

Bagesse cups: also made from sugar cane fibers. I like this material even better than paper because the products are made from by-products of sugar manufacturing instead of trees. We need all the trees we can get!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Our Pampered Butts Are Destroying the Forests!

California Redwoods 2008 Photo by Jacob

I’ve blogged before how shocking it is to examine one’s own consumption and the consequences thereof; we’ve made great strides in our overarching family culture in terms of how much plastic, gift wrappings/trappings, and bottled drinks we consume. We recycle diligently, plant native species in our landscape and we’ve switched to geothermal HVAC in our home. Not good enough, I’ve learned. Not good enough.

Apparently, Americans (including my family) are deforesting the planet at an alarming rate for the sole purpose of wiping our snotty noses and pampered hineys with thick, soft, white paper. According to a New York Times article published on February 25, 2009, we Yanks use an average of 23.6 rolls of t.p. per capita. Anyone who has lived in house full of women can attest to that and then some.

While a mysophobe like myself is never going to switch to the hand and water method of some less industrialized cultures (as many of the more radical environmentalists suggest), I will certainly be more conscious of my hygienic choices. From here on out, it’s recycled toilet paper all the way! Greenpeace publishes a guide to the most environmentally-friendly disposable paper products on their website. Among the worst: Cottonelle (my former favorite). Among the best: Seventh Generation and Trader Joe’s!

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Compostable Plastic Cups

How cool is this?!? Compostable plastic barware - use as many damn cups as you want because they will break down and truly be disposed! American bon vivants and mothers of toddlers everywhere, rejoice and be absolved of your plastic guilt. Made from eco-friendly, odorless and tasteless corn plastic.