Back to School Series: Eco-Friendly Backpacks, and Other Supplies-

The search for a PVC free backpack for my little soon to be preschooler has not been easy. I looked at every link on the Center for Health and Justice’s guide to PVC free back to school products. There was not one backpack for preschoolers.

I looked at the lunch pack from LL Bean, and those contain vinyl on the inside. Their backpacks seem fine, but I wanted to find one that was made in the U.S. (it seems most of LL Bean products are “imported”, probably from China.)

On Amazon I found many that have series gender stereotypes going on, and many are shiny with vinyl.

The Jansport preschool backpack looked good, but it doesn’t fit a normal folder in it. Too small.

See what I mean? Consumer paralysis!

I just started looking at Crocodile Creek’s backpacks and lunch boxes. They read my mind: it says the lunch boxes are “PVC free, phthalate free, lead-safe, and conforms to safety standards”. Me like that.

It starts getting to the point where I just need to buy something and move on. I would love to buy a U.S. made backpack created from sustainable materials, for under 35 dollars, that would fit my 3 year old. I do not think it exists. Business opportunity! You mama-entrepreneurs, get to it.

Also, I looked into these wraps for sandwiches called Happy Sacks that save plastic sandwich bags from the landfill. I emailed the mama who makes them to make sure they don’t contain PVC. She said the lining was made with some sort of polyurethane, but that it is on the inside of the lining which doesn’t come in contact with the food. There are many cute designs to choose from.

I’ll probably buy one of those, or something like it, and use small glass containers for snacks as well. I’m always on the lookout for more ideas for how to pack a green, healthy lunch and snacks. If you have some ideas, please post a comment. I do like the idea of Laptop Lunches, but I don’t want more plastic, either. It is certainly better than a completely disposable lunch, however. See, more green consumer paralysis!

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