One of the (many) awesome benefits of working for KIWI is that I get to go to cool events like the Green Products Expo, an event where green companies showcase their latest products to members of the media. At the expo I got my hands on all sorts of eco-friendly swag, but here are a few basic items I came across that are great for anyone trying to live their lives a little greener.
The decision to give up paper towels was a big one for me. I know, I should have done it long ago, but I love, love, lovethem—I mean, they’re super-convenient. Plus, they clean up everything from spills to kids’ sticky faces, so I can imagine how moms might be even bigger fans. However, planet Earth isn’t such a fan, which is understandable considering it plays host to landfills that hold approximately 2.5 million tons of paper towel waste. So I was very excited to find these eco-friendly cleaning cloths by SKOY. Each biodegradable, washable cloth is made from a natural cotton and wood-based cellulose pulp that outlasts 15 rolls of paper towels. Best of all, they really work! The cloth not only did a great job of soaking up a water spill that would have required at least two or three paper towels, it was even able to scrub away dried bits of food on my stove! ($7 for a pack of four, skoycloth.com)
Ecover Dishwasher Tablets
The type of detergent I put in my dishwasher had never crossed my mind until I learned that the phosphates found in most conventional options pollute the water, starving fish of oxygen. Still, I was skeptical that a greener soap would do the same job as my not-so-eco-friendly brand. Enter Ecover’s Dishwasher Tablets, which are not only biodegradable and phosphate-free, they also promise to clean a machine load of normally dirty dishes, and guess what? They did! My dishes came out sparkling, with no streaks or left-over bits of food! ($6 for 25 tablets,ecover.com).
snackTAXI reusable sandwich bags
I love pretty much everything about snackTAXI’s 100 percent cotton reusable bags from their fun patterns (polka dots or owls!) to their practical designs. But what I really love is the fact that I now have a far greener alternative to the plastic baggies I used to carry my peanut butter sandwiches in. Equally great: snackTAXI manufactures all of their products locally in their Massachusetts-based workshop, and are working to introduce organic and recycled materials into their line later this year. (Snack sacks starting at $5, snacktaxi.com).
EVOL frozen foods
Much as we might wish otherwise, hardly anyone has the time to cook every meal, everyday of the week from scratch. And if you’re a busy parent, or just totally terrified of the kitchen (ahem), it’s even harder. Enter EVOL frozen foods, whose selection of organic frozen food bowls, burritos, wraps and flatbreads is not only tasty, it’s also pretty eco-friendly. I’m an especially big fan of the Veggie Curry wrap, packed full with tofu, veggies, brown rice and a yellow coconut curry—delish! (Meals starting at $1.99, (evolfoods.com).