In my endless effort to replace plastic with more sustainable options, I found that merely replacing plastic containers with glass wasn't enough. I needed to swap out foil and saran wrap as well.
Why, you ask? Well, let's talk about it.
Covering a plate with foil or saran wrap and tossing it in the fridge is a quick, easy way to store food. However, wrapping your food in these materials is also an easy way to put yourself at risk for health hazards. Think about it... when you store hot food in aluminum foil the aluminum leaches its way into your food and can pose serious health problems over time1. Check out this short documentary called The Age of Aluminum, which reveals the “dark side” of this toxic metal and explores the scientific links between aluminum and diseases such as breast cancer and neurological disorders.
So over the years and decades of using aluminum foil and saran wrap to store our food, I've discovered that the bees have had the answer all along. While we usually prize bees for their honey and other tasty products, beeswax deserves to be high on the bee appreciation list as well. Beeswax food wraps are made of beeswax, and a type of fabric, usually cotton or hemp. Because this wrap is watertight, it locks in moisture – but does not let it build up – while letting the food naturally breathe. Something that plastic wraps and aluminum foil, being airtight, will not do.
Oh, and the best part is that you can re-use it after each use. You simply wash it with cold water, mild non-toxic soap and let it air dry. Not only will you save money in the long run, but you will also invest in your health and ecological footprint. Simple right?
What to look for:
- Certified Organic Cotton (GOTS Certified)
- Organic Bees Wax
- Organic Jojoba oil (for antifungal properties)
- Organic Tree resin - in my opinion, better than coconut oil because coconut oil is difficult to wash off! (antibacterial and antiseptic properties)
- Water Proof
- Plastic Free
- Zero Waste
- Prior to use, crinkle and scrunch your wraps into balls
- Use the warmth of your hands to shape the wrap to cover your food
- Gently hand wash your beeswax wraps in cool water with alcohol-free dish soap
- Air dry
- Fold and store
- Don't use in the microwave (beeswax will melt)
- Don't use with raw meat/fish (hot water can not be used to sanitize wraps)
- Don't deep freeze - usually ok up to 3 months
Beeswax Food Wrap Brands that are GOTS certified:
- Bee's Wrap - Shop Amazon
- Bee Eco
- pataBee - Shop Amazon
- Eney - Shop Amazon
- etee - Shop Amazon
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Neurotoxic effects of aluminum are associated with its interference with estrogen receptors signaling. Tsialtas, Neurotoxicology. 2020 Jan 13;77:114-126.
- Aluminium effects on thyroid gland function: iodide uptake, hormone biosynthesis and secretion. Orihuela D J Inorg Biochem. 2011 Nov;105(11):1464-8