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7 Eco-Friendly Tote Bags for Plastic-Free New York Shopping

Ally Nelson |

The New York state-wide plastic bags ban has come into effect starting 1st March this year. It was a necessary move, as a staggering 23 billion plastic shopping bags litter the streets, parks, rivers, and lakes of New York, ending up in landfills. Governor Andrew Cuomo did not only signed the legislature, but his office also implemented a massive preparation campaign we now know as “Bring Your Own Bag, New York,” or, in short, “BYOBag NY.”

What Does the Plastic Bag Ban Mean?

 New Yorkers are some of the most adaptable people in the world, so the plastic bag ban will certainly not disrupt their daily lives for long. While the bag waste reduction law comes with a particular financial burden for shoppers – retailers now have to impose a 5-cent fee for paper bags on certain groceries – people seem to be happy that finally, someone took a stand against plastic pollution.

The governor’s office even suggested what eco-friendly reusable shopping bags people should use, depending on what type of groceries they buy.

Reusable Tote Bags All New Yorkers Should Try This Year

To show our support for New Yorkers, now proudly stepping in the footsteps of residents in California, Oregon, or Hawaii, we have prepared a list containing seven eco-friendly and reusable shopping tote bags models for all occasions!

1. Heavy Canvas Shopping Bag for Solo Shopping

This heavy canvas bag is large enough to hold the one-week worth of groceries, toiletries, and some New York spring flowers with no effort. Enjoy the full side and bottom gusset that gives your bag shape and support at all times.

The side pocket allows you to store your keys, phone, or other accessories safely and with easy access. While the solid canvas natural nuance matches any outfit you can think of, the colored trims offer an elegant, simple, yet stylish look.

2. Foldable Cotton Tote with Pouch for Spur-of-the-Moment Shopping

Do you know those days when you have no intention to go shopping for anything, and yet you arrive home with a bag of new items – be them groceries, clothes, gadgets, and so on? For all such days, you can always have a foldable cotton tote bag with a pouch on you.

Keep the bag snuggly folded in its pouch in your purse or backpack. Use it whenever you shop for something in a spur of the moment. Use the pouch for keys or your phone when carrying around your items!

3. Heavy-Duty Large Jute Bags for Shopping with the Entire Family

Make your next supermarket run easy, stylish, and fun with these heavy-duty large jute bags for shopping. The size and shape make them ideal for carrying your groceries while sitting tight in the trunk of the car or the cab.

The biodegradable, extremely durable burlap shopping bags are suitable for shopping, and they can hold heavy loads. Keep them in the car for family trips to the mall or use them as fashion bags when you run errands on a typical day.

4. Practical Cotton Shopping Drawstring Bags for the Sporty Types

We know some people will sooner carry their groceries in their arms before wearing an over-the-shoulder shopping tote bag. For them, the alternative is an eco-friendly reusable backpack for groceries and other shopping items.

Large, durable, and multi-purpose, you can keep one at home, at the office, and even at the gym. Buy them in bulk in different colors and forget about plastic bags for good!

5. Insulated Tote Bags for Long Summer Shopping Days

Summer is coming, and carrying boxes of ice cream around can be a pain. Forget the pain of transporting cold foods and beverages on a 90-degree day. An insulated reusable tote bag does wonders, especially since it can double-back as a pool tote or a lunch bag.

The side pocket is more than helpful, and the thermal insulation works excellent. Keep one in the car or at the office, and don’t worry again about transporting fresh fruits, melting items, drinks, and meat ever again.

6. Zippered Handbags for People on the Go all Day

Are you the type that travels by subway or bus? Are you always keeping an eye on the grocery bags? Well, not anymore! A zippered reusable shopping bag with a flat bottom spares you the pain of picking up your groceries off the floor when in motion.

It does not slide away or flop over. You can forget plastic bags for good, as this tote bag doubles as an urban fashion purse and a grocery bag altogether! The zippered side pocket is a godsend for keys, cards, phone, or other accessories.

7. Natural Cotton Pouches for Shopping at the Bulk Bins

If you are going plastic-free, then go all the way! Get a handful of cotton pouches in different sizes for your farmers’ market shopping, dry foods, veggies, and so on. These natural cotton pouches feature a double-knotted cord at the top to close and open the pouch.

The durable natural linen cotton bags are great for shopping at bulk bins but also for storing foods in the pantry or fridge.

Keep in mind to wash them frequently to prevent food contamination. Other than that, these pouches are fantastic shopping aids whenever you want to buy bulk herbs and spices, coffee beans, nuts, dry fruit, candies, and more.

Why Should You Bring Your Own Bag for Shopping?

If you ask us, you should bring your own bag for laundry, garments, shoes, cosmetics, and so on. But until using reusable and eco-friendly bags for all our needs becomes the norm, we should all consider using more cotton/canvas/jute shopping bags. You can clean them quickly and reuse them day after day for years.

Since they come in natural fabrics, they are also biodegradable. Most people recycle or upcycle them into new items when reusable shopping bags wear and tear, so they also allow you to become creative with them.

Last but not least, using reusable grocery and shopping bags takes us all one step further in protecting the only home we have: planet Earth.