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Made with Okinawan beeswax, Majimu’s wraps are reusable and environmentally friendly.
post : 2022.02.26 20:00
Doing Our Part for the Environment
“I want to start doing something positive for the environment, but where do I start?”
Perhaps you’ve thought this, too. We might start bringing our own grocery bags to cut down on using plastic bags, or not buying drinks in plastic bottles but instead, bringing our water bottles or thermos wherever we go… Many of us have already started doing these. In recent years across the world, and in Japa too, people are becoming more environmentally aware and are doing what they can to do their part.
So, in this article, here’s a suggestion on what we can do about food wraps.
Plastic food wraps are convenient when we’re storing, refrigerating, or freezing foods, and also when we’re heating food in the microwave. But these plastic wraps are hard to recycle and are a factor in polluting our oceans. We are hearing more reports in recent news about how whales, turtles, and other marine animals are swallowing plastic wraps floating in the seas, and at times, losing their lives. To do our part in resolving such issues, read on about the Bees Wax Wrap.
Bees Wax Wraps Made in Okinawa
Aiko Miura of Majimu makes beeswax wraps from beeswax collected by Okinawa Bee Happy, a bee farming company that operates on Yagaji Island off the coast of the northern region of Okinawa Island. Okinawa Bee Happy is run by Aiko-san’s husband, Daiki Miura. Aiko-san says, “I wanted to make something out of the beeswax that was piling up and put them to good use. With the help of my friends, we were able to create this product.”
Many bee farmers discard the beehives because of all the time and work required to make use of them. The beehive needs to be collected, melted, filtered, and more. But the beeswax collected at Okinawa Bee Happy is safe to use to make lip creams, candles, and wax paper as they keep their bee farm without using pesticides and herbicides.
After the beeswax is cleaned, it is then melted. To add more grip or cling to the wrap, they add pine resin. They also add oil extracted from tiger nuts, grown organically by Natural Selection located in Kunigami. The mixture is heated over low heat until a thick consistency, soaked in cloth using a brush, then dried.
Colorful and Original Designs to Brighten Your Kitchen
The cloth wraps made by Majimu have bright, cheerful patterns, designed by Kitoco, a designer who resides in Nago City. Kitoco-san brought to life Aiko-san’s wishes of “creating wraps that bring together the charms of Okinawa’s honeybees and nature.” Illustrated on the cloth wraps are plants and flowers that grow beautifully around Okinawa and are favorites of the honeybees. These plants include the bidens, dragon fruits, red powder puffs, guger trees, Asagura from the genus Shefflera, pineapples, Indian coral trees, powder puff trees, and lily of the valley trees.
Benefits of Beeswax Wrap and Points to Remember
Because the adherent point of beeswax is low, these wraps can’t be used for hot foods or in the microwave. Still, there are many benefits of using beeswax wraps. For example, these wraps have antibacterial and antioxidant effects, prevent foods from developing mold due to their propolis contents, and keep foods fresh due to their moderate breathability while having great waterproof properties. Another great thing about these wraps is that they can be reused after washing (and can last for about a year even with daily use). Aiko-san also adds, “They also brighten up your kitchen and inside the refrigerator, too.”
She continues, “Some may say, “What difference would a single wrap make?” To fundamentally resolve environmental issues, we would need our industries to address the problem. But if we as consumers reassess the products that we use daily, this can trigger a bigger movement. Sure, plastic wraps are convenient, but if more and more people choose to use environmentally friendly items like these beeswax wraps, that would be wonderful. In the future, I’d like to use turmeric, Ryukyu indigo, and ginger lilies, which are known to have insect repellent effects, to dye the cloths for the beeswax wraps.”
In Australia where environmental awareness is high, people carry their eco-friendly shopping bags as well as beeswax wraps when they go out. Beeswax wraps are thin, light, and take up very little space so they can be carried around in small pouches. They’re convenient to have to bring home any snacks or leftovers on an outing.
Beeswax wraps have great advantages and are positive steps in protecting our environment. We hope you’ll give it a try!
Beeswax Wraps available at:
Okinawa CLIP photo writer, Sachiko Tachi