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Can Chrissy Teigen's cookware heat up sharing economy?

Jeanette Settembre

Bake without breaking the bank.

Cookbook author and TV host Chrissy Teigen tweeted Tuesday that she wants to donate products from her popular Target cookware line to a library near Philadelphia after seeing a post on Twitter about its rental program.  It encourages people browse a catalogue of kitchen tools like handmixers, blenders and baking pans, and check them out like they would a book.

"This is really awesome! I wanna donate my cookware to some! A lot of people don’t have the room or don’t cook/bake enough to justify having it sit around forever. Especially seasonal/holiday stuff," Teigen tweeted.

An Ohio library has a similar program which apparently started in Janurary and designated a $1,000 budget to purchase high-priced items like food processors, blenders and more niche baking molds some at-home cooks may only use once. The library stocked up on upwards of 60 items available for rent, and hundreds of people have ultilized the program since it launched earlier this year. Anyone with a library card can check out an item for up to two weeks, a library manager said.

"We're loaning things that people may not want to buy -- maybe they're single-use items like an Elmo birthday cake pan you'll only use once," Monique Mason, a manager at the library, told Fox Business.

Cookware could be the latest item up for rent as retailers expierment with subscription-based leasing programs.

Swedish furniture giant Ikea introduced a new leasing program in February allowing customers to rent out household items like desks and chairs.

Clothing retailers like American Eagle and Urban Outfitters started renting out apparel earlier this year for between $50 and $88 per month, while Rent-the-Runway -- an early pioneer of the rental trend when it launched in 2009 loaning out designer dresses -- has expanded its model to rent name-brand workwear.

Teigen's Cravings cookware line at Target sells pots and pans ranging from $39.99 to $60 in stores and online.

Surprisingly, some libraries have been offering cookware rentals for years. One Reddit user shared a post in 2015 showing off baking pans avilable at a local library. 

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For those concerned about the cleanliness of renting out cooking tools, Mason assures items must be dishwasher-safe, and need to be returned clean, though she does suggest people "give them a wash" before they get cooking.

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