Monday, August 25, 2008

Beware the Green Bags!

While we were at the beach a couple of weeks ago, we went to the Prime Outlets -- because really, what is a trip to the beach (or anywhere else) without a little outlet shopping? Hmm?

I stopped in at the kitchen store mainly because I wanted to find a big bowl to use for watering the dogs on the way home. Something that I could sterilize and re-use once I got home. I managed to find that plus some new bamboo spoons and a package of Debbie Meyer's Green Bags.

I'd been meaning to try them, because a lot of the produce I buy goes belly up by the time I get it out of the fridge to cook it. It isn't even that I don't know how to store food, that I don't cook it within the week, or that I can't pick my produce. It just doesn't seem to matter with some of the produce I get from the co-op. It is picked ripe, so it is really ready to eat when I buy it. It's my own fault if I let it sit 5-6 days in the fruit or vegetable drawer. I have a good fridge and have everything set correctly, but it just needs to be cooked right away.

So I bring home the Green Bags and (mostly) read the directions. How hard can it be to rebag produce, after all? I bagged the kiwi and put it away in the fruit drawer. I bagged the nectarines and put them in the fruit drawer. I bagged the tomatoes and squash (separately) and put them in the veggie drawer. And I bagged the bananas and put them on the counter.

Result? The tomatoes lasted 2 weeks and looked just like they did when I bought them. The nectarines and the squash stayed perfect within the 1 week period I had them. The last couple of kiwi are still fresh 2 1/2 weeks later.

But oh, those bananas. I ended up throwing out most of the bananas within the week. You see, you're supposed to try to keep the produce and bag as dry as possible. So I was supposed to be taking a paper towel and wiping out the condensation inside the banana bag each day. Yeah, like that's gonna happen! The bananas rapidly aged and sprouted mold on the skins. My dogs were devastated to see me throwing away what they perceived to be perfectly good bananas.
Their sad brown eyes begged me to spare the bananas, but no way, Jose! I tossed those bad boys. Wish I'd read some reviews before buying them.

You are supposed to be able to re-use each bag up to 10 times. You just have to wash it out and dry it thoroughly before using it again. I will probably use my stash of Green Bags for things like squash, lettuce, mushrooms, and tomatoes that tend to ripen really fast and go bad. In the fridge, the condensation doesn't seem to be much of a problem because of the humidity controls. I won't be using the bags for bananas or any fruit that I keep on the countertop (like melons, which I don't like to eat cold). It's just too much trouble, and I won't be buying anymore.

If you're thinking about trying them yourself, don't order online or on the phone, since you'll have to pay the exorbitant shipping charges. Find a kitchen store and buy a box there. But really, I wouldn't recommend them. They aren't worth the expense.

I don't normally do product reviews, and I'm not doing this for anyone but myself and my readers. However, I like to save myself and other people money. When a product says it will save you money, that sounds pretty good, right? Well, at least my bananas were only $.19 a pound from Costco instead of the usual $.69 a pound from the co-op. The dogs swear they can't tell the difference between the cheap bananas and the organic ones! :-)

Peace - D


Employee No. 3699 said...

Thanks for sharing that bit of info. I've seen the commercials on TV and have wondered if they work.

Daryl said...

I havent seen those anywhere in my local 'supermarkets' (none of which really is super in any way) but you've inspired me to go in search of them .. maybe at Whole Foods .. I am much like you I buy and then dont eat fast enough so things go bad ...

As for the bananas .. well .. I keep thinking how mom would buy them unripe and put them in a bowl and in a day or two .. perfect .. of course she lived in FL and maybe that helped .. AC 7/24 .. but who knows.

Thanks for the tip, Doris!


LOVE the new look!!

Akelamalu said...

I don't think we can get those bags over here, at least I've never heard of/seen them.

I've never heard of dogs eating bananas, though our dog would eat anything we were eating including raw onion!

Sarah said...

thanks for that...i'd been really wanting to try them but i won't now.


Jay said...

I'm sure I left a comment here, yesterday, but I don't see it... anyway, I just wanted to say that I have tried these green bags, and they do work quite well!

I'm not sure if I'd re-use them though. I suppose it depends on what they were used for. And I will definitely steer clear of using them for bananas!

RiverPoet said...

E.3699 - They do work in certain circumstances, but not in all circumstances. And I'm just not vigilant enough to wipe the bags clean of condensation every few hours.

Daryl - The bags did great with some things. I don't trust them with countertop food, though.

Akela - My dogs are prone to head tremors, which - for them - seems to be associated with low magnesium and sugar. I give them each 1/2 of a banana daily to balance that. Much cheaper and better for them than vitamins!

Sarah - Thanks for stopping by! The Green Bags are okay for certain things. Like I said, my tomatoes looked fantastic. But they really are expensive, considering.

Jay - I'm glad you had some good experiences with them. I thought that re-using them was part of what made them "economical"? But if they are working for you, great! Yeah, the bananas were a disaster, though.

Peace - D