So the Plastic Free July is coming up and this year I have decided to take part in it.
Plastic waste has been an issue for many year, and me like many others believed that whatever I do will not make much difference at all since it is the bigger organisations that has to make a start. My attitude has changed over last 3 years. EVERY single shopping decision make a huge difference in our yearly plastic waste contribution.
I have been trying my best to cut down on buying things with plastic and other packaging that’s not recyclable. I have identified all my local markets, zero waste shops and ways I can go about my daily life with no wasteful single use plastic packaging purchases.
With the whole 1 month challenge I’m hoping to really challenge myself, to make life long changes to how I manage my buying habits and also develop more positive attitude to preparing foods and snacks that will not involve me using any wasteful packing at all. Also I want to stark making ideal changes to beauty and cleaning products I use as these are the things that I currently struggle a lot with. It is not easy to make your own cleaning products and making time for it in busy lifestyle does not feel like a priority.
I think there are so many online and offline resources around UK that you can use for advice on recycling and how to reduce your plastic waste, and what are the alternatives to your current buying habits. You can look into it more by checking out the links at the bottom of this post.
Hope there will be more and more people joining in this awesome challenge which aims at helping our planet with recovery from the extreme damage it currently endures.
Here are some of my personal tips and easy swaps you can start plastic waste reduction:
- No more plastic bottles. Reusable bottles are so much better in so many ways and water should be FREE so why are you paying for it?
- Bringing your own food storage pots. In case you are thinking of having a take away or a lunch at a local caff, if you know they will give you a plastic pot to serve your food in, why not give them yours? I have been doing this a lot at work with local caff, and they were more than happy to put the food in my own food container.
- Have a straw with you at all times. I also carry my small cutlery set everywhere I go. Just say no to plastic straws and cutlery. Small stuff but it adds up over the years.
- Invest in an eco-friendly coffee travel mug. A lot of coffee shops like Starbucks serve their drinks in fully recyclable cups, but sometimes these are not recycled properly so it’s better to have your own. Some places even offer you money off if you bring your own mug.
- Use long life bags for house shopping. This should be a norm now I think.
- Using biodegradable everyday items instead of plastic options. These could be cleaning ware, natural fibres in furniture and clothes, swapping clean film for food containers or beeswax wraps and just overall using natural substances where you can. Reusing and recycling is key.
- Buy loose fruit and veg as much as you can. You can save money by going to local markets and educate your little ones (if you have any) about the importance of supporting local farmers and businesses.
- If meat or dairy is in your diet, go to local butchers or farmers’ market and get fresh food packed in your own containers.
There are many others swaps you can make, but it all takes time and exploration to make sure you do what’s wright for you and your family, and fits in with your budget.
Plastic Free July: https://www.plasticfreejuly.org/
Recycling advice in UK: https://www.recyclenow.com/