Hikari's Food/Japanophile and Other Interesting Stuff blog

Shpadoinkle! Weekly: Reusable Containers

on September 16, 2012

Okay, this is less a review and more of a commentary piece. But I LOVE reusable containers.

Drink bottles, snack cups, microwavable food storage, Hubby complains about the cupboard being full of the stuff in all shapes and sizes.

There’s more where these came from!

Bottles: Now, I know some of you might think it’s unsafe due to leaching of chemicals from the plastic into your drink or consumable. But, PET bottles are fairly safe as long as they’re not heated. Plus, of course, you need to keep them clean, because bacteria can do damage faster than a little leached chemical can.

BPA has been banned almost everywhere, so unless it’s an old container, hard plastic bottles are fairly safe.

According to earth911.com:

Safe food storage plastics: #1, #2, #4, #5.

Possible toxin leachers: #3, #6, #7. (Don’t (re)use these!)

I like these!

I know that for a while in countries such as Germany & Japan they were trying a bottle reusing program but Google is practically useless so I can’t find any information on if they’re still doing it. I’ll update if I can find some good links. But anyway, they were taking containers like this and popping off the seal rings, washing and refilling. Personally, I love these square, fairly rigid bottles.

Of course, I don’t keep them forever, once they start to get a bit tattered, worn or funky, they go into the recycling bin. I’ve also run across tons of different ideas for reusing plastic bottles once they’ve outlived their usefulness as such. Coin purses, pencil holders, water sprinklers, flower pots, even building materials. I got a little lost  for about an hour just looking at what people have done with their bottles.

Food Containers: Anyone who has read my American Bento posts knows how I love a good container. Something I want to share is a recent acquisition from Wal-Mart:

Quite a few come in a package

They also come in 3 sizes.

They’re pretty flimsy, so probably won’t be very reusable if used in the microwave. But for craft supplies and dry foods like cereal, crackers and nuts? This package was worth the less than 3 dollar price tag.

And now for my bit of Japanophilia: Mottainai (もったいない). This is a Japanese concept of regret over wastefulness. Simply translated, it could come across as ” what a waste!” In my 3rd American Bento post, the Furoshiki revival I mentioned is tied to this concept: Instead of using a plastic bag, use a reusable bag or cloth to carry your purchases. Applicable to just about anything, such as food or materials, this concept has caught on globally in an attempt to be less wasteful.

Here are some ideas for alternate uses of plastic bottles. I casn’t credit the pictures because they’ve been reposted so many times it’s hard to find the sources!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

No review, so no score given, but Shpadoinkle all the same!


3 responses to “Shpadoinkle! Weekly: Reusable Containers

  1. What a very informative site, I have found alot of very useful information here and still have a lot more to read. Thank you very much for the time and effort you have put in….

  2. Oops, my pictures are broken! Will fix soon!

  3. hi really appreciate your effforts on contributing on your pat to conserving environment.

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