Easy ways to REDUCE PLASTIC in the home

REFUSE   REDUCE   REUSE   RECYCLE

In a TED talk I recently listened to it was said that REFUSE is now the fourth R.   I feel fairly confident that I’m doing a good job in refusing shopping bags (supermarket and other), but whenever I do a supermarket shop it’s hard to believe how much plastic packaging come wrapped around SO much of our food.  We’re not big buyers of processed food in our family, but much of our regularly bought items (crackers, cereals, nuts, seeds, baking goods etc etc), mean there’s loads of plastic going into the bin each week.

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Do you use the bulk bins in your local supermarket?  I use these EVERY week and while the bags supplied are reusable for other things, how many of these zip lock bags does one need???  So I’ve taken to naming and storing these bags, and taking them with me on every shop – and it’s significantly helped.

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I hang them with a big wooden clip, stick them to the fridge near the grocery list, and then they are ready to go.  I throw the whole lot – clip and all – into my handbag.

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The flimsy plastic bags at most fruit and vege stores really annoy me, but the lightweight drawstring bag is a fantastic way to avoid these.  I’ve had mine for 6-7 years with many, many years left, so buy them once and you’ll never need to use those flimsy bags again!

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The biggest issue is remembering to have them when shopping, so I now hang them under my handbag by the front door.  Game changer….  😉

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We don’t eat meat every night, so the meat we do buy usually comes from the butcher not the supermarket.  There’s something nice about supporting these small businesses, chatting to the guys preparing the goods, and you expect the quality to be better.  Recently I’ve started taking my own containers to avoid the plastic bags (flimsy;straight-in-the-bin), and my local butcher didn’t even raise an eyebrow…seems I’m not the only one 😉

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There’s people out there doing AMAZING things to completely cull plastic from their home – I’ve recently become aware of the Zero Waste Bloggers Network and these people are making a significant difference.  But I figure that small change is better than no change, and I’ll continue to come up with practical ideas that are easy to start and maintain.  Crackers are my major challenge – we eat so many of them!  My kids love them, I love them, and when I baked my own recently, while they worked beautifully they were expensive to make.  (And my kids wouldn’t touch them…)   So please let me know if you have a good cracker recipe that doesn’t empty my seed jars!

With plastics polluting our oceans, killing our sea life, and entering the food chain as they break down into tiny, tiny pieces, ulimately affecting our health, it seems the time is now to make changes to our daily habits.  No stylish pics this week, but unfortunately there’s nothing pretty about this….

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See you next week and have a happy weekend ahead!

Kim

P.S. I’d love for you to follow me on fb and instagram for regular inspiration on creating a more sustainable home and lifestyle 🙂

 

 

 

Author: The Coastal Creative

Living close to the beach encourages a relaxed way of living and this influences my work as an interior designer. I am drawn to the eclectic, faded colours, rustic timber, the imperfection of things hand made, and objects that tell a story.

8 thoughts on “Easy ways to REDUCE PLASTIC in the home”

  1. I had never thought of reusing bulk bin bags. And I love the idea of those mesh bags for fruit and veg. Where can you get them from? I bought some Kai carrier reusable zip lock bags as a kindy fundraiser . They have been awesome and have saved me money. I use them to put my meat in when I seperate it and then store in the freezer. They’re easy to wash and they air dry well.
    Check out Sarah Wilson i quit sugar.com she might have a good cracker recipie.

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    1. Hi Nikki. I have looked at the Kai carriers but haven’t bought any – great to get your feedback! And thanks too for the cracker suggestion – I will definitely check – good idea….

      You’ll find the drawstring bags I mostly on the Onya website. They have a list of stockits – many seem to be markets and that’s how I bought mine, but there are some retailers too. I like these because they are lighter and you can easily see the contents (helpful for the retailer), but the other ones from Rethink actually look nicer hanging in my home! http://www.onyabags.co.nz/stockists.php

      and….http://rethinknz.com

      Hope this is helpful and thanks for making contact 🙂

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  2. Omg. I’ve been trying to figure a solution to those stupid bulk bags for a long time now. This is golden. Especially as I usually buy the same bulk items over and over. Thank you!

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      1. Just did my grocery shop yesterday and did this and was so so happy! I’ve got reusable produce bags and I’d been searching for the bulk solution for ages. The cashier was impressed with my bags, I think they were easier to read than the traditional bag tie tabs.

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