Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Plantable Trisquits and Recycled Scrubbies

I guess this whole "green thing" is catching on, Nabisco and 3M have started coming out with more eco-conscious products. The first is this Trisquits box I came across, that had a sheet of cardboard that had basil seeds embedded in it. You plant the cardboard and grow your own basil, as part of the supposed "Home Farming Movement" Nabisco/Trisquit has started. They're like secret toy surprises for adults who like to eat Trisquits, I guess. The connected site has tips on how to get started growing your own food. I think it's interesting that they haven't also initiated the "Home Baking Movement" and show you how to make your own Trisquits. (honestly, making crackers is hard -- I tried to bake some once and it came out okay, if you like hard tack).

Today I was at the Publix purchasing ingredients for the world's MOST EXPENSIVE stain remover; about twice a year I manage to miss a crayon in the pockets of my son's jeans before they go into the wash. This first crayon mishap of the year yielded particularly heinous blue splotches on my husband's new work shirt and I figured, if nothing else, I would save this one article of clothing that was rather expensive. Looking at the internet I found a stain removal recipe that included Tide, Oxyclean, Shout, Borax, and vinegar. I don't know about most people, but I only had the vinegar, hence my trip to the store.

While there I saw that Scotch-Brite now has scrubbies made from 50% agave plant and 23% recycled paper. Agave fibers, huh? I often fear for plants and insects when humankind finds a new use for them on such a large scale. The sponge part (with the recycled paper) is supposed to be made from "100% natural fiber." So I emailed 3M:

Hi, I just purchased the Greener Clean Scrubbers at my local Publix and was wondering where the 77% other "natural fibers" (beyond the 23% recycled paper) comes from. Also, what is the other 50% of the scrubber material made from, beyond the agave fibers? Thank you!

We'll see what response I get. I'll also update when I've actually tried the new scrubbie.

When I was checking out, the bag man (he was retired, so I don't feel comfortable calling him a "bag boy") saw the scrubbies and said, "ah, these are probably made from recycled PVC." and I said, "wow, how did you know that?" and he replied, "Um, 30 years as a chemist." I hope he's working as a bag man at Publix because he wants to.

Here is the response from 3M (that was quick):

Dear Michele,

We appreciate hearing from you.

The natural fiber Non-Scratch Scrub Sponge scrubber is made from 50% agave
plant and 50% polyester. The sponge is made from 23% recycled office paper
and 77% cellulose.

Best Regards,

Home Care Division

Tuesday, March 09, 2010


I don't usually like taking solicited requests for reviews of any kind, but I got an email from Nicole, at, who asked for a review. My only criteria for non-annoying eco-friendly websites is that they not have ads. Ecofreek had one ad, for Reverend Billy and the Church of Life After Shopping (I think it used to be Reverend Billy and the Church of Stop Shopping, but whatever) and that was it.

It's a search engine, so you can put in any search term (I used "co-op" because, praise be, the Citizen's Co-op has finally got a storefront [but more on that later]). Not much in Florida, except a free pigeon coop, but if you choose an anywhere search you get stuff being given away as well as links to forums where people are discussing "coops." I'll have to remember to use it the next time I'm doing research for a blog post!