So another zero waste week may be over, but that’s no reason to give up trying to reduce packaging and other waste. I have found this week really useful for focussing the mind on ways of reducing the packaging and other unnecessary stuff we bring into the home, and finding about new ways of avoiding or reusing thing – many thanks to the addictive and informative discussion on the Zero Waste Heros Facebook Group .
It has been tough, and we still have plenty of waste, but the week has focussed my mind on finding ways to reduce our waste further.
I am now the proud owner of some abeego wraps to use instead of cling film. ( from Boobalou) And doesn’t the half eaten mango in our fridge look lovely in it?
I now know that you can buy specially made reusable kitchen towel (rather than just using cloth serviettes / tea towels etc) and even spent a fascinating hour one evening reading blogs about washable toilet roll ( or “family cloth”) – not sure I am convinced about that one yet but some people obviously love it – see this fascinating post from Becoming Peculiar . Didn’t imagine I’d be doing that at the start of the week.
I asked the council to replace our standard sized wheelie bins with smaller capacity bins – this will focus the mind on maintaining a lower level of waste.
I have had a mini sort out and given things away to foodbanks and refugee collections for example.
I’m starting to put together a zero waste appropriate christmas gift list of reusable stuff to replace disposable items ( and guess what everyone will be getting from me too).
I have also bombarded my facebook friends with loads of information about reducing waste – sadly not a single one has liked or shared anything at all so thank goodness for the friendly folk at the Zero Waste Heros Facebook Group for keeping me from getting too depressed by this.
Of course even if we think do all start actually thinking about the packaging, zero waste is a long journey – the reality is that most of us have to shop in a supermarket and most things are overpackaged. Legislation may be the only way to overcome this, and I don’t see that as likely any time soon. But, there are easy things we can all do to reduce our waste where we do have options, and every little helps. There are some easy swaps – even just swapping that multipack of individually boxed portions of raisins for a single large pack and putting a portion for your kid’s lunch into a reusable small pot helps, or choosing the yoghurt in the recyclable cardboard carton over the plastic one.
My favourite change, and one I could have done long before was to ditch the convenient individually packaged bags of fresh coffee we discovered a couple of years ago and go back to using loose coffee in a cafetiere – we have a fantastic local shop that roasts and grinds coffee and who didn’t bat an eyelid at me taking my own container for the coffee. Now, knowing little about different coffees, we just have to work our way through the huge selection on offer to find the one we really like.
Anyway it’s now Ditch the Disposables week – bring it on.