Bulk bins are an awesome tool for grocery shoppers. If you have ever gone to Whole Foods or your local health food store you will see that there is an aisle where clear plastic bins are stacked and filled with grains, dried beans, nuts, seeds, dried fruit, etc.
Have you ever seen the bins in a candy store? All the lovely candy bins stacked up on top of each other, with the pretty colors beckoning to you. The bulk bins I am talking about are exactly the same, except filled with the healthy stuff. I love shopping in this aisle because I can control how much of each item I want, and there is always lots of different things to choose from.
The first time I encountered bulk bins I was a little intimidated. What do I choose? How do I do this? How much should I get? There were things I had never even heard of. But that’s the beauty of bulk bins. Quinoa? Steel cut oats? Lentils? Don’t know what it is, or how it tastes? Fill up your little baggy with a couple of servings and try it at home. If you discover you love quinoa, when you go back you can load up with more. If you hate it, then you didn’t waste money on a huge box of something you will never eat again.
Simply grab the provided plastic bag, fill it up with as much product you want, tie it off, and write down the number of the bin (either on the twist tie, or on the little sticker they provide) so that the cashier can ring it up properly. Usually there is also a scale by the bins so you can weigh your bag and know exactly how much you are buying.
Another thing I love about bulk bins is that it cuts down on the packaging. This is not only good for Mother Earth, but also saves you money! Since you are not paying for the brand name and flashy packaging, you usually end up paying a fraction of the cost. And who doesn’t like to save money?
When I get home with my new purchases I store my bulk items in glass jars. That way my pantry is not loaded down with random plastic bags, and I can clearly see my food. Glass jars are easy to acquire if you do not want to go out and buy them. Instead of throwing out your empty sauce/jam jars. Save them and wash them out. They are perfect for holding your bulk items.
So let’s review – shopping in bulk saves money, cuts down on packaging which is better for the environment, allows you to control the portions you buy, and enables you to experiment with new food…what’s not to love?!
Give bulk shopping a try…promise you will not be disappointed! 🙂