When Yellow and Blue No Longer Make Green

Back to School without the Baggies

Originally posted on:  Lunch Box Mom by Sarah Vander Schaaff

As I type this, I’ve got 712 Ziploc bags stashed in a closet that are never going to see the light of day. No, I wasn’t considering a Mary Louise Parker-style sideline business; these bags have been forsaken for an entirely different reason:
The clear knowledge that when it comes to packing lunch, “yellow and blue” no longer make green.
Not green in the sense of environmentally friendly.
 I don’t have the perspective to call this a tipping point, but, in my house, the age of the Ziploc is officially over.
It’s been a great forty year reign for them, and thanks to the particularities of airport security, I have a feeling there’ll always be a market for the bags, but woe is the mother who sends her kid off to school with a free-range turkey and cheese sandwich packed in one.
That’s a no-no, a bit like sending three dozen chocolate and glazed munchkins from Dunkin Donuts in for snack time. I’ve never done that. But, believe me, everyone knows the name of the mother who did. There are some things you just can’t live down, especially in preschool.
The edict against Ziploc bags was issued early last month:
“Send your child’s lunch in ‘green’ packaging, which means using reusable ‘Tupperware’ like containers instead of disposable Ziploc bags.”

This came from the director of my daughters’ school, and was part of a longer letter explaining their pursuit of LEED certification for existing buildings,  a benchmark for green buildings established by the United States Building Council.
The new carpets installed over the summer don’t off-gas noxious odors, the fingerprints lining the hallways have been covered with low VOC paint, and instead of ammonia, the aroma of back-to-school in my era, the entire place smells pretty much like nothing, which is precisely the goal.  They hope to create better indoor air quality, spend less, and set an example for the kids and their families. I am one hundred percent onboard.
But tiny plastic bags are a particular vice of mine, and I did consider my options.
To read the rest of this post or make a comment, please visit Sarah’s blog, Lunch Box Mom here.

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