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Jun 17

Reuse: Storage & Organization Around the House

Posted on June 17, 2022 at 4:27 PM by Kaitlynn McCumiskey

Reuse StorageWith the cost of everything rising here are a few simple ways to reduce waste, reuse items, and save money!

We all have an image of an older person washing and rinsing out zip top storage bags. Kudos to you if you do this already. It turns out Grandma wasn’t wrong! Even if you wash and reuse each bag just once you are cutting down on your consumption by 50%. That means saving money, resources, and disposal space.

How many items do you place in your recycling bin that could be reused around the kitchen, cut down on waste disposal, and the need to purchase something new?

Why purchase expensive storage containers when you likely have items in your recycling bin that can do the same job? Sour cream, yogurt containers, glass jars, take-out containers, boxes from salad mixes can all be reused. I mean it makes sense, right? These items were used to store and transport food to your home, why can’t they continue to serve that purpose before being recycled?

Let’s look at some other items destined for disposal that might have a second use.

Cereal/Cracker box liners: use for piping bag for frosting, cut into squares and use to keep burger patties separated in a stack, use to wrap up homemade bread, rolls and buns before storing or freezing. Portion out leftovers and other foods and use a vacuum sealer to keep fresh. They are thicker than regular zip top storage bags and can often be used in place of.

Glass jars: great for storage and organizing. Pack up leftovers or use for drinks on the go. Use as flower vases or make a water candle (fill jar with water and fruit, flowers, herbs, or spices and put a floating candle on top).

Plastic bottles and jugs: fill with water and freeze to use in your cooler this summer. Not only will you be reusing something destined for the recycling bin, but you will save the plastic waste from buying a bag of ice.

Cardboard tubes: great for organizing extra cords, cables, and chargers. You can even label what they are for future reference.

Do you have a creative reuse idea? Let us know what it is! recycle@ontariocountyny.gov