Strong

You can load up a cloth bag with oranges or potatoes and carry it with one hand. Try that with one of those flimsy paper bags. And if a paper bag gets wet, it’s history.

Organic

While packaging manufacturers claim that it’s OK for your food to come into contact with plastic, doesn’t it seem more sensible to store your food in organic cotton? Conventionally grown cotton uses more insecticides than any other single crop, accounting for 25% of insecticide use worldwide. We use only organically grown cotton free of pesticide residue, inks, dyes or bleach.

Re-useable

My own cloth bags are now 15 years old and still going strong. When you stop and think about it, how many everyday products can claim that sort of longevity? By contrast, on average, a plastic bag has a useful life of about 20 minutes.

Ecological

Using cloth bags is clearly the ecological choice. Plastic bags are made with polyethylene that does not bio-degrade, and less than 1% of all plastic bags ever get recycled. Exposed to light, they may take up to 1,000 years to break down into smaller and smaller plastic particles, but if buried they may never degrade. Imagine if everyone used cloth bags, how much plastic could be kept out of the environment.

Years ago my husband and I visited a remote beach in Mexico on the Yucatan Peninsula. From afar, the beach was multicolored and I’d guessed it was fishing nets laid out to dry. As we got closer it dawned on us that the “pretty” colors were actually numerous bits of plastic trash. The shoreline was virtually covered in plastic – bags, doll heads, nylon rope, broken nets, plastic shoes, plastic bottles, food containers, bottle caps, disposable lighters, toothbrushes – you name it. Far from the sanitized resort beaches of Cancun, here was the reality of plastic pollution staring us in the face. Then sometime later I heard about the North Pacific Gyre, where the Great Pacific Garbage Patch the size of Texas swirls around just beneath the surface. I decided I needed to change my own personal shopping habits, to reduce the amount of plastic I was contributing to the massive, worldwide problem of plastic pollution. And so…

15 years ago I started using cloth drawstring bags to transport produce from the grocery to home. It’s only a guess as to how many single-use plastic bags I’ve avoided throwing away in all that time, but I’m estimating in the neighborhood of around 9,000. And then…

After having numerous checkout clerks over the years ask me where I got the nifty produce bags, I thought, well maybe I should be selling these things since one else seems to be doing it. While it’s encouraging to see more and more people using cloth carrier bags, it’s rare to see anyone using cloth produce bags. And so…

SAX was born. We travelled to India to locate a manufacturer who could make our bags for us. We found a factory that treats its employees fairly and uses GOTS certified organic cotton for our bags. So now SAX bags are available to everyone at an affordable price.