Organizing Tip: How to Pack a Grocery Bag

posted in: Organizing 5

Do you cringe at the thought of cracked eggs?How to Pack a Grocery Bag

Do you shudder when you think about squished bananas?

There’s no need to cry over spilt milk!

In this post, I offer a few tips on how to pack a grocery bag.

Packing a grocery bag the right way can prevent food from being bruised or damaged in transit.

Pre-sort items on the conveyor belt.

You can save yourself some time and effort by pre-sorting groceries at the conveyor belt.

All you have to do is load heavier items towards the front of the conveyor belt.

This not only allows you to pack bags faster, but it allows you to start building foundations for several grocery bags at once.

Pack in layers.

The golden rule of grocery bag packing is heavy items on the bottom, lighter items on top.

If you need a helpful visual, you’ll pack canned goods on the bottom, and would place items such as eggs, or bread, on top.

You can expand this golden rule into layers, by providing sturdy vertical structures throughout the bag.

Here’s a sample list of layers keep in mind:

  • Lower Layer (heavy items) – canned goods, potatoes, apples, carrots, pineapples, large bottled beverages, and heavy boxed goods
  • Middle Layer (midweight items) – medium and small boxed goods and jars, hard vegetables, and leafy vegetables in plastic bags with indeterminate shapes
  • Top Layer (light items) – anything that might mush and anything that goes crunch such as: eggs, bread, bananas, marshmallows, soft fruits like peaches or plums, tomatoes, chips, crackers, and cookies

Use available structures for bag reinforcement.

The average shopping cart is filled with a variety of geometric shapes.

These include: rectangular blocks and square boxes (cereal, boxed mixes, facial tissues), cylinders (cans, jars), spheres (apples, oranges, melons), and oblong shapes (bananas, pineapples).

Use these shapes and structures to help set up sturdy foundations in a bag. Stand items upright as much as possible to help create structure and prevent potential spillage.

For example, you can set up a series of tall cereal boxes next to a bunch of bananas, or use a bag of apples to cradle leafy vegetables, and so on.

Now to you…Do you have any methods for packing grocery bags? Will you try any of the suggestions listed above? Join the conversation and leave a comment below! 

Follow Rashelle:
Rashelle Isip is a New York City-based professional organizer and productivity consultant who helps people get organized so they can stress less, have more fun, and be happier at home. Her work has been featured in Good Housekeeping, Fast Company, Cosmopolitan, The Washington Post, Business Insider, and The Atlantic. Get access to her free guide, 10 Simple Ways to Make Your To-Do Lists More Effective, by clicking here.

5 Responses

  1. Organized Living Essentials

    This is so cool. When I was in high school and university I worked at a grocery store as a cashier and packer. I was trained with the same rules that you shared. To this day I still load my groceries on the conveyor belt keeping in mind how I want my groceries to be packed. Sometimes it helps and sometimes it doesn’t make a difference. Great job!

    • theorderexpert

      Yes, the art of packing is best learned through trial and error. Even when you think you’ve got it down, you learn something new each time. 🙂 Glad you liked the post!

  2. Ruka

    After you packed all the grocery. There is a tool that can help you carry grocery bags if you have too many of them. It also makes you feel that the grocery is lighter on your hand. search google “one trip grocery bag holder art of creative life”

  3. Karin

    This is how I was taught in the very early 90’s when I was a bagger. I always use self check outs because I can save the store a lot of bags and I can prevent bags from rolling around in the car. If you have to tie a handle there the bag is packed incorrectly. These steps I use with every grocery shopping trip!

    • Rashelle

      Hi Karin, it looks like we have the same bagging techniques! That’s a great rule of thumb when it comes to the grocery bag handle. Thanks for your comment and for stopping by the blog.