You have probably caught on by now that we really have it out for single-use plastic. Not just for the packaging that used to ugly up our supply chain, but also for the persistent daily plastic that's nearly impossible to avoid, even if you're the Queen of the Zero Wasters. So for the first feature in our brand new Product With Purpose series, in which we highlight brands we admire for solving problems and leading the sustainability charge, it makes sense that we chose a plastic alternative that’s attractive in its simplicity and incredibly useful in its application: Stasher Bags.
If you don’t have a Stasher Bag, or a bag of Stasher Bags, you need one. Packing your carrot sticks in a flimsy single-use sandwich bag is really a thing of the past. Just ask Kat Nouri, the founder of Stasher Bags and brainchild behind incorporating BPA-free, food-grade silicone into our daily lives. To get a behind-the-scenes peek at what’s going on at Stasher headquarters, we caught up with Kat herself.
Can you tell us a little bit about your background and what led you to start Stasher?
My mother has a PhD in nutrition and my father was a professional athlete, so I remember from a very early age being conscious of the synergy between our food, health and overall health of the planet. I was encouraged by my parents to think outside the box and to pursue my passions. As a result of my upbringing, I’ve always challenged the status quo and questioned our single-use culture.
When I became a mom of three, I was appalled at how much waste and single-use plastic we consumed as a family of five—I knew there had to be a better solution out there. When I couldn’t find the perfect solution in the marketplace, I set out to create a beautifully designed, hyper-functional, plastic-free bag where you didn’t worry about losing extra parts or lids.
What is Stasher in three words?
Optimistic, Inclusive and Inspiring
What are the company’s priorities?
We want to provide a better alternative to single-use plastic. By creating something that is aesthetically pleasing and functional, we hope to make that behavior change easy and exciting for consumers. We want people to think differently about the single-use nature of our culture and our priority is to provide an endlessly reusable solution.
We’ve seen Stasher Bags pop up everywhere recently. What do you see as the main reasons they’ve caught on so quickly?
Well for starters, we believe we have the best product in the marketplace today. Are we perfect? No. But we strive to provide people with an endlessly reusable and radically functional plastic-free product that is easy to integrate into your everyday life.
We have a beautifully designed product that is not only functional, but it’s fun and easy to use. That functionality combined with a viral social media following empowered by a generation that refuses to support products without a conscious and our amazing retail partners are three big reasons why I think we’ve taken off in the marketplace.
Why is right now a great time for Stasher to exist?
We are in this critical moment where we are literally and figuratively drowning in plastic. Consumers are looking for better alternatives and are supporting companies with a purpose with their wallets. I wholeheartedly believe that people want to make a difference and strive to make choices that better our planet. One of the easiest choices you can make is to switch from single-use products to reusables.
How are you guys making sustainability ‘cool’?
As a brand, we strongly believe that every choice you make (however small) has a positive impact. That collection of small steps from many, can add up to a lot. As a part of the plastic-free movement, it’s really important to us that we’re inclusive and that we demonstrate that sustainability and the choices you make matter.
Sustainability can be fun, meaningful and colorful (as evidenced by all of the eye candy colors we offer).
What do you love about your team, and why are you the ones to solve the plastics problem?
There are so many things I love about my team. They are the lifeblood of Stasher. Their enthusiasm and support not only for Stasher but the plastic-free movement is central to why Stasher has been a success. Our retail partners and customers feel that love and enthusiasm...it’s truly contagious.
That said, we are just one small part of a much larger group of people and companies who are trying to provide better alternatives to single-use plastic. I am a strong believer that the whole is stronger than the sum of its parts. Every small action, choice or product that enters the marketplace that is aiming to solve this issue is a big win for tackling the global plastic problem.
What is the most creative way you’ve seen a Stasher bag used?
Hands down, one of my personal faves is wrapping your hot flat iron in a Stasher bag and packing it in your suitcase. I travel a lot and I’m always running out the door with a hot curling iron or flat iron in my hand waiting until it’s cool enough for me to pack it. Now I just stick the hot iron in a Stasher Half Gallon and throw it in my suitcase on my way out the door.
I also love seeing all of the unique ways that our Stasher squad uses our products. Our instagram is full of really creative ways our amazing community uses them, I would definitely check out our feed for ideas.