Make going green easy with small steps toward sustainability. One place to make a swap is with biodegradable trash bags. Get our picks for the best options below.
Did you know that conventional trash bags typically take up to 1,000 years to degrade? That means the conventional trash bag you throw away today will still be here for centuries and generations to come. Not only that, but plastic bags kill over 100,000 marine animals every year, so each one you dispose of is liable to impact a life somewhere on the planet.
That’s why we’re so adamant about making changes wherever you can, because even the small ones add up to a big difference. One easy way to switch to a more environmentally conscious household is by swapping out your conventional trash bags with biodegradable ones, and we’ve got some great options for you to check out to get you started.
The Best 100% Recycled Trash Bag
Public Goods offers a variety of eco-conscious household products, including three sizes of biodegradable trash bags at affordable prices. There’s the 3-gallon compostable trash bags, 13-gallon trash bags, and 28-gallon trash bags — all made with 100% raw recycled materials. Because they’re 100% oxo-biodegradable, they degrade within five years, yet they’re still as sturdy and reliable as conventional bags. Plus, they’re super budget-friendly. Get a pack of 25 28-gallon bags for just $8.50.
The Best Compostable Trash Bag
PlasticPlace’s 45-gallon compostable trash bags are loved by users because they’re so leakproof. They also meet ASTM D6400 certifications, meaning they’re fully compostable in an industrial composting facility. They’re transparent as well, so you can see what’s inside, and the large size means you can pack in a lot of trash before reaching for a new one. The only complaint to be aware of with this bag is that it’s not very thick, so be careful not to accidentally puncture it and end up with a spill.
The Best Biodegradable Bag for Your Kitchen
Your kitchen trash bags are heavily relied on, so you want one that’s dependable. Primode’s compostable trash bags are often considered as the strongest among the typical 13-gallon, kitchen-use bags. Made from corn and vegetable starch, these bags are BPI-, ASTM D6400-, and Austria TUV-certified. They’re also 100% compostable and certified safe for both home composting as well as by municipal and industrial facilities.
The Most Budget-Friendly Bag
At about 10 cents cheaper per 13-gallon bag on average, Reli BioGrade biodegradable trash bags can help you save on your eco efforts. They’re ASTM D6400-certified and marked BPI-certified. These bags are able to sell for a bit cheaper because, in addition to plant-based ingredients, they also include chemical additives that speed up degradation in response to heat, oxidation, sunlight, certain organisms, and crushing. While these bags are more affordable and a better alternative to conventional options, it would be better to find an option that doesn’t include chemical additives.
The Best Yard Waste Trash Bags
If you want to compost yard waste through a municipal center, BioBag Lawn and Leaf 33-gallon bags can do the trick. These bags are made from vegetable oils, compostable polymers, and plant starches from renewable, GMO-free crops. They meet ASTM D6400 standards for municipal composting and are preferred over paper yard waste bag options because they stand up to moisture. Even so, the brand does recommend composting any wet materials like grass clippings within three days or the bag will start to decompose.
The Best Portable Toilet Replacement Bags
Toilet replacement bags come in handy in a variety of situations, particularly camping. Garden V bags are a great option that are made from plant-derived resin, vegetable oils, and compostable polymers. They’re durable, with a thickness of 1.1 millimeters, and hold in odors well. They’re also certified compostable in home systems by TUV Austria. Another perk is that these bags are black, which is helpful when you have any kind of waste you don’t want visible.
The Two-for-One Bag
While paper bags don’t perform well with wet trash and are made from trees, they do offer multi-use benefits. An option like the Lowe’s brown paper bag that’s intended for yard clippings can double as grocery bags until you’re ready to use it for trash. Combine the multi-use capabilities with the fact that they’re biodegradable and sturdy, and they’re definitely better than traditional choices.
The Best Pet Waste Trash Bags
Being a responsible pet owner means picking up after pets in responsible ways. The UNNI Compostable Extra-Thick Pet Waste bags make that easy. These bags have multiple certifications and are made from corn and plant starches that degrade to only water, carbon dioxide, and humus. They’re easy to take on the go when walking the dog or for scooping the cat box at home. They’re also made to be composted both at municipal facilities and at home, though it’s not recommended to compost pet waste unless it has a separate pile.
How to Reduce Household Waste for Further Eco Benefits
The best way to reduce the impact you make on landfills is to reduce the amount of trash you contribute to them. According to a December 2020 report, The US generated 292 million tons of waste last year. While switching to biodegradable trash bags goes a long way, it’s essential to make them last longer by reducing the frequency of filling them up with garbage that will still end up with an impactful footprint. Consider being more mindful about unnecessary purchases, product packaging, and making items last as long as possible to lessen repurchasing. Composting, shopping second-hand, and exchanging items with others are also practices that can greatly help reduce unnecessary waste.
The conversation around single-use plastic is prevalent, but trash bags are often an item that gets overlooked. When you’re swapping out your old single-use products with more eco-friendly options, biodegradable trash bags are actually a pretty easy and budget-friendly change to make. There are actually many brands today creating convenient, well-made options. Try any of the choices above to find a new favorite and take a meaningful step toward sustainability.
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