It's finally here, we are launching our brand new bag at the Naturally Good Expo 29 - 30 April at the ICC in Darling Harbour Sydney.
Back then when My Last Bag was merely an idea I somehow believed I was just going to make a simple bag. Little did I realise that the research and development that went into this project was not going to be as simple as the final product. Here are some highlights from my 12 month journey into fabrics, sustainability and manufacturing, all while raising 2 boys under 6.
I wanted to make the bag out of the most sustainable fibre I could find. This in itself started a long search into the world of fabrics. Even when I'd set my heart on hemp the question was then; which type of hemp? My Last Bag is made out of Unbleached Undyed Dew Retted Hemp. Dew Retting means the stalks are laid in the field after harvest and nature takes its course; bacteria, sun, air and dew help to dissolve the stem material surrounding the fibre bundles. This technique uses far less water than the more commonly used water retting where bundles of the stalks are submerged in water. Now that I'd chosen the fabric....
The Roll and Snap Close System
How was the bag going to close?! The obvious and first answer that came to mind was Velcro. However, Velcro wears out quickly, especially when opened and closed on a regular basis and bulk foods could easily get stuck in Velcro. The second most obvious answer was a zip, but again, this just didn't sit right with me, to put flour in a bag and then zip it closed, well....
It took a lot of prototypes, a lot of thought, a lot of looking at the traditional brown paper bag, but we now have a closing technique, simply roll and snap closed.
No Washing Required
I wanted this product to be easy for people to use , to not add to the laundry basket ~ simply because I want people to ACTUALLY USE the product so we can prevent more single use items getting thrown out. This is why My Last Bag is laminated with food safe TPU so it wipes down very easily. No washing required.
You don't want to pay extra for your produce because of the bag weight. This is why the empty weight of the bag is printed on the back. So when your bulk food store mentions the weight, just point to the bag weight that we have printed on the bag for you.
And then there was one more issue! Once there was food in the bag how would you know what was in it?? The solution we found for this was to put a name tag on the bag. The name tag is also Unbleached Undyed Hemp laminated with TPU. With a chinagraph wax pencil you can write the name or item number of your bulk food on the bag and then simply wipe it off when you fill the bag with something else.
As a busy mum, I really wanted to eliminate 2 steps in the bulk food shopping process. Firstly, I did not want to deal with paper or plastic bags which I'd have to throw out after one or two shops, or bringing bulky glass containers to the bulk food store. Secondly, I did not want to transfer the produce from the bag into another container when I got home. The bag IS the container. My Last Bag is designed to look beautiful in your pantry and also works well for smaller homes where there's no space for rows of jars. You can also store My Last Bag in the fridge or freezer for extra long freshness.
Naturally Good Expo is very aware and onto it when it comes to waste issues; https://naturallygood.com.au/food-drink/food-waste-nuisance-business-opportunity/ so I feel we will fit right in.
If you are attending please come and say hi and check out My Last Bag. We will be part of the Chemical Free Community at stand F06 right near the cafe.