Got a free reusable shopping bag today from the pharmacy where I shop.
Scan your card to get a handful of coupons and they give you a free reusable bag.
This bag came with a warning label. It said:
Reusable bags must be cleaned and disinfected between uses to prevent food cross-contamination. Failure to do so can cause serious illness resulting from food borne pathogens.
So, unless you run your reusable bags through the wash machine AND disinfect them, you have an increased chance of food poisoning. But at least the pharmacy warned me so they have a possible legal defense if I get sick from using the bag at the grocery store.
My new bag weights just over one ounce, I’ll guess 1.25 ounces based on my cheap postal scale. Multiple websites claim a plastic bag weighs about 5.5 grams. That would be 0.19 ounces. So the reusable bag is somewhere around 6.5 times heavier than a plastic bag.
If you want to figure out the breakeven point, add in the cost of washing the bag, say every other time you use it. Or, add in the risk of a hospital visit for each use.