5 Ways to Save Money When You Shop Green
Shopping green doesn't have to expensive! Here are 5 easy shopping-list tweaks that add up to a smaller carbon footprint and a cheaper grocery bill.
1. BE SMART ABOUT SINGLE-SIZE
Buying bigger packages rather than individual sizes means less packaging waste. Divide food into smaller portions at home and store it in reusable containers. If convenience items are a must now and then, opt for versions packaged in recyclable pouches, like GoGo squeeZ Applesauce ($2.99 for a 4-pack), or Tetra Paks, like new whole grain oat drink Simpli OatShake ($4.95). Just make sure they actually end up in the recycling bin!
2. CHOOSE CONCENTRATED DETERGENTS
Bulky jugs of detergent often come in heavy plastic containers that take a lot of fuel to produce and transport. Switch to powder that comes in paper packaging or to concentrated versions. Method's 8X concentrated laundry detergent ($15 for a 50-load bottle) is also biodegradable, so it won't pollute water sources. And when you compare concentrated versus regular by the number of laundry loads, you're saving 50 percent.
3. THINK BETTER BOTTLED WATER
Of course it's greener (and cheaper) to drink tap water, but if you just can't resist the convenience of grab-and-go H2O, look for brands bottled in renewable plant-based materials (the label will say "petroleum-free"). They're becoming widely available.
4. SWITCH TO RECYCLED FOIL
Aluminum foil production sucks up tons of energy and spits out lots of pollution. But in contrast to plastic -- which can be expensive to recycle -- recycling foil takes only a tiny bit of energy.
5. SKIP BAGGING YOUR PRODUCE
Bananas (and citrus and onions) don't need to be wrapped in plastic -- nature gave them a protective skin! As for pre-bagged salads, you'll save up to 90 percent by buying whole heads of lettuce instead. Skip the bag -- you're going to wash the greens at home anyway.