Most of the renowned grocery stores and supermarkets offer reusable bags to shoppers with every purchase. Made from eco-friendly materials, the bags are reused several times till it wears out. An alternative to plastic or paper bags, these grocery bags are safe for the environment. It reduces paper and plastic waste that usually goes into our landfills. Customers also love to go for eco-friendly bags that can be reused time and again. These bags are useful for daily use and are not harmful to the environment. Made from natural fibers, these bags are more likely to get contaminated with repeated use.
The grocery bags that shoppers get with every purchase are sturdy. They last for a long time and are ideal to carry shopping items. People often carry meat, fish, eggs or vegetables in these bags. Using these bags on a regular basis can be the cause behind contamination by germs like Salmonella or E.Coli. These germs can cross-contaminate food and other items in the bag and thus affect your health. A lot of people suffer from bacterial infection each year due to unhygienic grocery bags used. So, it is very important to take care of these bags properly and wash these frequently.
Here we have mentioned certain tips to keep your reusable grocery bags clean and safe for usage.
Wash reusable grocery bags often
It is very important to wash these bags regularly. If the bag is made of cloth, it is better to wash it with detergent and then dry it in dryer or air-dryer. If the grocery bags are made of plastic, it is better to scrub it with hot water and soap and then air-dry it. Ensure that both the types of bags are dried completely before you store them or start to use them. Try to wash these bags once in two-three days to keep it clean and safe for use.
If you are carrying raw meat, poultry or fish, try to wrap it in disposable plastic bags before you keep it in grocery bags that are reused. These packages may have juice dripping off from the raw meat or fish. It is always better to cover this kind of food items in disposable plastic bags before you keep in it grocery bags. Also, do throw away these disposable plastic bags once you have used them.
Keep separate bags for each type of foods
Often it has been seen that the same bags are used to shop for meat, fish or fruits at the same time. People also have a habit of shopping and storing everything in the same bag. This can be the root cause of germ and microbe growth in these bags, which will eventually affect the health of an individual. It is better to keep separate bags for each type of food materials that you purchase. There must be separate bags for fruits, vegetables, and meat items. This will reduce the chances of cross-contamination and keep your food items safe. If you get confused it is always better to label these plastic bags and use it for different purposes. Have more than one bag for each of the food supplies that you frequently purchase.
Do not use these bags for other purposes
Sometimes people use grocery bags to carry sports items, toys, baby bottles, gym clothes, gardening supplies or car accessories. Virus contamination can happen this way too. So, use grocery bags only for food items. Never carry any other kind of non-food items in it. Sometimes people are also seen to carry lunch in these reusable shopping bags, store important documents or miscellaneous items in it. Try to avoid using these bags for any other reason apart from carrying food items.
Do not keep bags in a car
Do you have a stack of grocery bags in your car? Or do you prefer to keep some in a garage? Keeping grocery bags in your car or garage can be the main reason behind microbial infection in these bags. These places are damp and humid which invites the growth and multiplication of microbes. So, avoid keeping grocery bags in a car where it is dark, damp and moist. Whenever you are going to grocery store, try to carry these bags instead of storing it in car or garage. Also, never keep used grocery bags in a car which can be the obvious reason behind contamination. Keep these bags in a place where it is dry and plenty of sunlight is available.
Following the above-written measures can help one to prevent microbial infection in these grocery bags. It is better to get rid of the bags that have worn out and have been used for a long time. Keep the reusable grocery bags clean and dry to use it as and when needed. Try to go for quality bags from renowned brands that are safe for keeping food items.