There is now an alternative for all those who are really fed up with the enormous amount of waste we generate. A small sack called a Naturtasche made from fine organic cotton is replacing paper and plastic bags at supermarket bakeries and in vegetable aisles – and it is not only feather-light, but also takes up no more space than a tissue when folded.
The idea is Munich resident Anneliese Bunk’s way of taking a stand against the crazy quantities of packaging material used in supermarkets. Shocked by a report on the dramatic consequences of tides of plastic rubbish and the harmful effects they have on health, the entrepreneur decided to make combatting the use of plastic her mission in life – and so the Naturtasche was born.
According to Ms Bunk’s calculations, a thinner, reusable organic cotton is an alternative to plastic and paper that is considerably more environmentally friendly than the latter two. At just 15 grams, the thin sack weighs no more than a paper bag of the same size. And those aren’t the only advantages: Naturtaschen are made from an extremely fine and strong organic cotton fabric and are easily able to hold several kilograms in weight. The breathable fabric can also be washed at 60 degrees, and will keep the goods fresh and preserve their flavour.
In February 2015, Ms Bunk began selling her reusable fruit, vegetable and bread bags to retailers and end customers. She makes sure that those involved in the production process are paid fairly, that only materials left in their natural state are used and that the manufacturing is of the highest quality. She said, “The more durable a product is, the less harmful it will be to the environment.”
During the crowdfunding campaign she set up to found her company, Ms Bunk also asked for other suggestions on how plastic could be eliminated. In cooperation with Nadine Schubert, she then put together the many suggestions she’d collected in a book entitled “Besser leben ohne Plastik” (Living Better Without Plastic) and had this published by Oekom Verlag. The book made it into the top 20 of Der Spiegel’s bestseller list in July 2016.
Naturtasche (www.naturtasche.de) will be one of the exhibitors in the Pavilion for Young Innovative Companies. This pavilion is being supported by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi) and is aimed at newcomers and start-ups based in Germany. 20 companies altogether will be presenting products there in hall 9 at BIOFACH, the World’s Leading Trade Fair for Organic Food (www.biofach.de), which takes place from 14 to 17 February 2018.