July 12, 2012

Plastic Challenge: Clare Marie, Week 1


I’m looking for replacements for the organic rice crackers & rice cakes that I’ve been buying, as well as dog food .. Recipes to make my own, or tasty/healthy substitutes that is :)

Location:, New Zealand

Name: Clare Marie

Week: 1

Personal Info:

Independent mum or two, however my 19yr old daughter is currently away studying, so it’s just 10yr old son and myself at home .. + dog, chickens, & fish ..

List of plastic items REFUSED this week. (Yay!)

I take (fabric) shopping bags with me so both the vegetable stall man and supermarket woman know better than to offer me one .. I did however refuse to buy adult carrots that I wanted for juicing because they were all pre-packaged in plastic bags ..

Total items collected: 17

Total weight: 60 gram

Items: Recyclable
The plastic bags & ties from fruit & vegetable stall will be returned when I get next weeks goods

Items: Nonrecyclable
Ceres Organics Rice Crackers packaging
Ceres Organics Rice Cakes packaging
(end of) Dog Roll packaging
Coconut Water label off glass bottle
Chux Kitchen Gloves packaging
Golden Fields Dandelion Chai bag pouch
Label off Picallili Jar
Plastic ‘thing’ found chewed up by dog – no clue what it was?!
Foam sponge son brought home from school & dog also chewed up *is this plastic?
Bit of chewed up ball – yep, that crazy dog again!
Fruit labels
Weird plastic/rubber substance tied on bunches of bananas
Frayed end off clothes line
Miscellaneous bits found when vacuuming (plastic string/tabs)
Tape from fruit bags

What items can I easily replace with plastic free or less plastic alternatives?
Well as I mentioned above, I’m looking for good alternatives to our ‘rice snacks’ – that satisfy both the boy & myself .. And I’ve started preparing dog food at home, which is why in a little over a week there’s only that last piece of the packaging = I didn’t buy more ..

What items would I be willing to give up if a plastic free alternative doesn’t exist?
The Dandelion Tea Bags .. I still have the second pouch from that same bag to use up, and then I’ll just have to start experimenting with dried root & spices to come up with my own blend ..

What items are essential and seem to have no plastic-free alternative?
The gloves for soap-making purposes, and they need to be replaced when they get punctured – once every 3-4 months ..

What lifestyle change(s) might be necessary to reduce my plastic consumption?
Growing more of my own .. Especially to be rid of the fruit stickers since my diet is 90% raw fruit & veg

What one plastic item am I willing to give up or replace this week?
As above – commercial dog roll & dandelion tea bags

What other conclusions, if any, can I draw?
Not a conclusion but I wanted to share a little story:

Just the other week I replaced all the plastic storage containers in my kitchen cupboard for glass .. Then we had an earthquake .. Nothing serious, but it sure shook the house up good and caused a mini-heart/panic attack .. And do you know what I was thinking the whole time it was rattling ? Not OMG the house is going to collapse, not OMG call the dog under the table, but Noooo, not my glass jars :(

*for the record nothing smashed, but you see how proud & devoted I am of the plastic alternative :P

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