This Eco-Friendly Grocery Plastic Bag Won't Harm Mother Earth

Did you know that regular plastic only starts to decay after 1,000 years?

IMAGE EcoNest Philippines

Food packaged in single-use plastic is often the cheaper option as opposed to bottled or canned products. The downsides of it is that plastic only decomposes after 1,000 years and the rampant production and consumption of single-use plastic is piling up in mountains and polluting our seas at an alarming rate. Thankfully, EcoNest Philippines, an initiative of Joshua Caampue and Dominique "Nikki" Sevilla, offers a more eco-friendly solution to our unfortunate situation.

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EcoNest Philippines is an online shop that carries eco-friendly alternatives, like the cassava bio bags, edible straws, sugarcane boxes, and other plantable items. Nikki shares, "We call it as such because we want to build a community of environmentally-conscientious consumers. We want to be as inclusive as we can so that it is not just for those who 'can afford' but for those who are willing to make it a lifestyle. We are [the] "nest" of this new and growing community as we introduce all these alternatives."

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It's great that most supermarkets have made the shift to use paper bags and have encouraged shoppers to BYOB (Bring Your Own Bag), but there are still smaller establishments, especially public wet markets and provincial supermarkets, that have yet to make the switch. A great alternative to plastic bags is EcoNest's Cassava Bio Bags, which may look like it's plastic, but it's not. This type of bag is made with cassava, which makes it biodegradable, compostable, and soluble in hot water. Compared to the 1,000-year shelf life of single-use plastic, the Cassava Bio Bags only have an 18-month shelf life-basically, it decays in 180 days.

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The Cassava Bio Bags comes in a T-Shirt Shopping Biobag, Grip Hole Shopping Biobag, and a Trash/Laundry Biobag. There are different sizes, from a small, medium, and large that can carry at least 0.5 kilograms (small Grip Hole Shopping Biobag) to 8 kilograms (large Trash/Laundry Biobag). What makes this the ideal plastic bag for grocery shopping is that it can carry wet or moist products, such as meat and bottled beverages. You won't have to go through the usual burden of having paper bags soaked in moist, leaving it susceptible to tearing. The same goes for using the Biobag as a trash bag.

The Cassava Bio Bags is still a relatively new product in the market, which entails that the Philippines doesn't have the necessary technology to produce it just yet. According to Nikki, "We are introducing these to grow the categories and eventually be able to put up a production plant and provide a livelihood for the communities."

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EcoNest Philippines' Cassava Bio Bags and their other eco-friendly plastic alternatives are currently sold in bulk with the price that ranges from P415 to P1,490, depending on the type of bag and the bulk order. EcoNest decided to sell the Cassava Bio Bags in bulk because they are targeting business owners and entrepreneurs-because, let's face it, as much as we individually lessen our single-use plastic consumption, the production end also needs to put in the same effort.

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For more information, follow EcoNest Philippines on Facebook and Instagram.

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