Little Lunches Reusable Wraps reduce your plastic use

This Creston, B.C.-based business lets you join the beeswax food wrap movement or the garbage-free lunch crowd

Lana Schanzenbach is holding several of her Little Lunches Reusable Wraps.

Lana Schanzenbach’s two children make their own lunches using her Little Lunches Reusable Wraps. — Virginia Rasch photo

Plastic straws are on the hit list of things we don’t need in our society (tag line: straws suck). Also on the list of items we don’t need to buy anymore—plastic wrap!

Lana Schanzenbach in Creston, B.C., created Little Lunches Reusable Wraps because the two schools her children attend encourage “litter-less lunches” and she wanted to reduce her household’s use of plastic.

So she experimented with 100 per cent cotton fabric and 100 per cent beeswax and came up with a wrap that is 100 per cent biodegradable. The beeswax is sourced from Creston beekeepers.

The wraps save money because they are reusable. “Our household plastic volume has gone down significantly,” Schanzenbach said. “My kids get two grades (years) out of theirs.

“Because the beeswax has a stiffness to it, it creates better protection for a sandwich than a plastic bag, takes up less space than containers and doubles as an eating surface for their desks during the meal,” she said.

When other students and teachers saw her children’s reusable wraps, they wanted some. Thus the business was born four years ago.

These Little Lunches Reusable Wraps are made from a geometric fabric of multi-coloured stripes, which adults might prefer.

The Little Lunches Reusable Wraps come in kid-friendly fabrics as well as in geometric fabrics, which adults might prefer. — Virginia Rasch photo

Dual-purpose wraps

Schools are starting to implement garbage-free days or weeks—or forever. At Gordon Terrace Elementary School in Cranbrook, kids who bring a garbage-free lunch to school (plastic containers, reusable fabric snack bags, wraps, etc.) are entered into a draw to win prizes.

To entice kids to embrace the concept, Schanzenbach uses fun fabrics—such as Disney characters. “My son chose a hockey pattern and my daughter a floral,” she said. “They love them.”

About 50 per cent of her wraps are sold for wrapping lunches but the other half are used to keep food fresh and crisp in the refrigerator.

The wraps can be used for individual veggies or used to cover bowls of food in the fridge. Avocados don’t brown, lettuce doesn’t get slimy, and herbs stay fresh for up to two weeks. That’s because beeswax is antibacterial and antimicrobial; the wraps are breathable and therefore allow gases to escape.

The made-by-hand wraps come in four sizes and are sold singly or in packages. Schanzenbach takes custom orders to fit specific-sized bowls.

The label of Little Lunches Reusable Wraps

— Virginia Rasch photo

The wraps come with directions for cleaning them (with cold water and with baking soda or salt if a little grit is needed) and for “refreshing” them (after 10 to 12 months, depending on usage).

Schanzenbach sells her wraps online and at the Creston Valley Farmers’ Market. She plans to expand her sales into local stores in the future.

Virginia Rasch

Virginia is a writer and copy editor with Koocanusa Publications. She is an avid outdoor recreationist in all seasons and has lived in the Kootenays for 10 years. With degrees in the natural sciences, she has worked as a tour guide, an environmentalist, a writer, and a copy editor of scientific publications. Virginia now brings her passion for everything green to Kootenay Business. View all of Virginia Rasch’s articles

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