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September 26 2021 7:14 PM ˚

Malfouf Eco Bags aims to cut plastic consumption

Malfouf Eco Bags is a small business founded in 2017 that offers an eco-friendly alternative to plastic bags. (Photo: Handouts from Malfouf)
Malfouf Eco Bags is a small business founded in 2017 that offers an eco-friendly alternative to plastic bags. (Photo: Handouts from Malfouf)
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AMMAN – Although reusable shopping bags have taken off in much of the world as a more environmentally-friendly way to shop, in Jordan, plastic bags are still commonplace.اضافة اعلان

One small business is trying to change that.

You can limit the amount of plastic you bring home with you while shopping by using Malfouf Eco Bags, which are “reusable mesh bags for vegetables and fruits, to reduce plastic consumption,” said company owner Kati Pilter Mihyar in an interview with Jordan News


Malfouf Eco Bags is a small business founded in 2017 that offers an eco-friendly alternative to plastic bags. (Photo: Handouts from Malfouf)

Malfouf Eco Bags was founded in 2017. “We realized that Jordan has a plastic issue, and we decided to reduce the amount that we carried home at each time we buy vegetables,” she said. 

Mihyar explained that using her sewing skills, she started making eco-bags and using them. Soon, her friends became interested in her idea. Ultimately, Mihyar and her partners launched Malfouf Eco Bags. “When people became more interested, we launched Malfouf Eco Bags officially,” she said, adding that while “the idea started with three partners … now I am the only owner.”

The name of her business, Malfouf means “cabbage” in Arabic. “We were brainstorming, and we wanted a cool name, so we called it Malfouf, which means cabbage — since the bags are wrapped around the vegetables.” 

The eco bags are simple, lightweight-yet-strong, washable mesh bags that are used to hold fruits and vegetables. “These lightweight and durable mesh bags are great for storing and washing fruits and vegetables, as well as laundry bags for travel,” she said. 


Malfouf Eco Bags is a small business founded in 2017 that offers an eco-friendly alternative to plastic bags. (Photo: Handouts from Malfouf)

The owner stated that the multi-purpose Malfouf Eco Bags can be used as suitcase organizers, travel bags, or laundry bags. “The mesh bags have small holes in them, so you can wash things inside them.”
 
Billions of plastic bags are used annually, worldwide, and Malfouf is hoping to reduce this number. “If you have Malfouf Eco Bags, you do not need to take plastic bags from the grocery when you shop, so you do not use any plastic,” said Mihyar.

Malfouf Eco Bags are locally sourced in Jordan using fabric from factory overproduction. The owner added that, in the future, she would like to search for even more sustainable means of production. 


Malfouf Eco Bags is a small business founded in 2017 that offers an eco-friendly alternative to plastic bags. (Photo: Handouts from Malfouf)

“People who use Malfouf Eco Bags are happy to own them and be using them,” she said, adding that Malfouf Eco Bags is the first business to offer eco-friendly bags in Jordan.

Mihyar told Jordan News that, at first, her main challenge was time management. “At some point, we were producing less, and then all the business things such as marketing, selling points — these things were difficult.” 

She said that Malfouf also provides tote bags. These tote bags are durable, large, and available in fun colors. 

Mihyar said that sustainable products are growing in the Jordanian market slowly, and people are becoming more interested in these products.

“It is a mindset,” she said. “People are becoming eco-friendlier, and the ones who are using our bags, then they might look into other solutions to save the environment, which lead to bigger impact. It maybe cannot be measured immediately, but step by step.” 

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