Drop that Bleach! The Wasteful Side Effects of the War on Bacteria

War cannot be won. I’m not advocating anything dangerous here, just old-fashioned common sense—and practices. We are too clean and so are our homes. And that germaphobia has created a market—or the market has created germaphobia—for all sorts of wasteful products. I’m not advocating you never bathe. However, this MIT chemical engineer hasn’t showered since 2003 […]

Zero-Waste Living Is Front-Page News!

I was in the Mercury News this past Friday, a Bay Area paper that covers Silicon Valley. I had read the article online Friday morning and thought to myself, “I should buy a copy and see if the article also appeared in the print edition.” So late in the afternoon, I moseyed over to the store […]

Ditch the Produce Wash and Use Baking Soda and Water Instead

Someday we shall look back on this dark era of agriculture and shake our heads. How could we have ever believed that it was a good idea to grow our food with poisons?” — Dr. Jane Goodall I buy organic produce at the farmers’ market from small local producers who: grow a variety of crops […]

If I Could Relive My Life and Buy Pots and Pans for the First Time

Perhaps your concern over plastic pollution choking our oceans inspired you to reduce your waste. Or maybe pics of glass jars of food popping up all over Instagram piqued your curiosity. Or you simply may have wanted to eliminate your exposure to harmful chemicals. These roads all lead to the same destination—a more natural lifestyle. […]

Lose the Plastic not Your Mind During Plastic Free July

Plastic contamination has reached every corner of the planet. And while many, many organizations and individuals have been working on the problem of plastic pollution for years, thanks to David Attenborough’s Blue Planet II and National Geographic’s June issue focused on plastic, awareness of the crisis has finally reached mainstream consciousness. Plastic Free July this […]

How Do I Juggle All of This?

Sometimes this lifestyle makes me crazy. I will admit it. When I try to rush out the door in the morning and notice my sourdough starter sitting on the counter, yearning for the feeding I have neglected to give it, I get why people don’t want to look after one. Although feeding my starter takes […]

15 Creative Uses for Food Scraps

Last week I rewatched Anthony Bourdain’s documentary Wasted! The Story of Food Waste in Berkeley on the big screen and spoke on a panel after the film. Anyone who eats should see it. (You can read my review of it here.) The chefs in the film came up with such creative dishes from food that […]

A Zero-Waste Business

jars of food

I don’t want to sell anything, buy anything, or process anything as a career. I don’t want to sell anything bought or processed, or buy anything sold or processed, or process anything sold, bought, or processed, or repair anything sold, bought, or processed. You know, as a career, I don’t want to do that. — Lloyd Dobler, […]

12-Step Program to Cut Processed Food

I admit it. I love sugar. I eat less sugar than I used to but I still eat it. And although I don’t believe sugar is as addictive as cocaine, food manufacturers certainly seem addicted to the stuff—or at least to the huge profits that added sugar enables. A University of North Carolina survey found that […]

How to Organize a Produce Bag Making Meetup

lemons in a cloth produce bag

This past Sunday, eight people from the Meetup group I belong to met to sew a pile of simple cloth produce bags. Everyone pitched in. Some ironed, some cut, some sewed. In the flurry of activity, I didn’t do an exact count of the bags we churned out but including the handful I finished up […]