'I have never been a fan of plastic wrap, so I would cover all our dishes with tea towels while entertaining or preparing a meal for my family.’
The problem arose when I needed to bring a salad or dessert to someone else’s house, or if I wanted to keep a dish refrigerated. I experimented with some tying and wrapping techniques that proved to be very bulky and fussy. What I really wanted was something light and breathable that would stretch around the sizes and shapes of my dishes. A lightbulb went on and I started making dish covers.
When I could no longer keep up with demand, I started looking for women who could sew in their homes. Having employed mothers and wives in manufacturing facilities in the past, I saw that these often-troubled communities needed to have the guardianship of women. The women provided stability to the family and are the eyes and ears of neighbourhoods. I worked towards an arrangement where women had the flexibility to be home when children returned from school and could still earn their own money. We provide the materials and equipment and have a weekly drop and collect system that has resulted in the upliftment of many women’s lives and hopefully brought some hope to families and their neighbourhoods.
To facilitate our work-from-home mission I started printing the dish covers with stamps that I carved by hand. Today our dish covers are screen printed due to the increase in volume, with the original designs still being hand-carved stamps.
We have limited power over the single-use plastics found in mainstream grocery stores - but we have complete power over what we use in our homes. Spaza dish covers are plastic-free making them a breathable cover for food. Being breathable, dish covers eliminate condensation and through the process of evaporation, allows your food to cool quickly in the refrigerator. I am often asked, ‘does it keep the food fresh?’ and I am reluctant to burst the bubble created by advertising stating ‘plastic locks in freshness.’ Luckily for the planet – freshness is related to the time since the carrot has been pulled from the earth. Plastic can seal in moisture, and even create moisture through condensation but it can’t do much about time.
Spaza dish covers are available individually or as a set of 4 sizes for everyday storing and serving. Small is ideal for single servings, leftovers or condiments. The medium size suits a pasta bowl serving or a small salad. Our large size fits most table salad bowls while the extra-large is ideal for entertaining and will go over odd-shaped casseroles and servers. There is also a handy set of mini sizes for storing bits and bobs in the fridge.