We all need to cover and store our food. We know that keeping food covered and/or refrigerated extends the life and freshness of food. And this is really important nowadays as we are all trying to avoid food waste. By doing this we will not only reduce the carbon footprint of our shopping basket but also save money.
In the past, most of us turned to cling film or tin foil for this purpose and these have become staples in our kitchens. Admittedly, cling film and tin foil are convenient and hygienic. But with concerns about their effects on our health and their impact on the planet, maybe it’s time to ditch them and try some alternatives.
I often use a plate to cover bowls or a glass jar to store food. They are the most sustainable methods as you are using something you already have. But they aren’t always suitable or quick. Often, wax food wraps are just the ticket! We have several options, including a vegan one.
But maybe you can’t imagine life without cling film and tin foil and need a little convincing to change your habits.
Firstly, let’s think about the health concerns. In recent years there have been studies showing that the aluminium in tin foil leaches into food due to heat and causes Alzheimer’s, autism, dementia and cancer. The link to these has been found to be inconclusive in an article by USAToday. Personally I am not taking the risk and avoiding it. Cling film is safer than it was in the past as phthalates are no longer used but other plasticisers are still present, so I would prefer to find an alternative.
Next, consider their impact on the planet. As they are mostly used as single use items there is a cost in the energy and materials needed in their production and disposal. Tin foil can be recycled (although only if it is washed first) but not every council accepts it. It is also possible to recycle cling film but again not many councils provide this service. So chances are that a large amount ends up as waste in landfill or even worse as rubbish on streets or waterways.
Perhaps you think that nothing will be as easy to use as cling film but, in tests by Which, wax food wraps were found to be top of the list for versatility, ease of use and ability to keep food fresh. I have used them for years. They mould easily to the shape of bowls as the heat of your hand melts the wax slightly. They are perfect for wrapping sandwiches, cheese and other snacks. They are easily washed- just wipe with lukewarm soapy water and air dry. And they can be refreshed using beeswax wrap refresher drops or vegan wrap refresher crumbles.
So, I encourage you to try this eco-friendly alternative to cling film and tin foil. I for one, am very pleased I have made the change.