June 14, 2011

Plastic Challenge: Kristin, Week 15


Location:Prince George, British Columbia, Canada

Name: Kristin

Week: 15

Personal Info:

Couple in Prince George, BC working & attending university plus bunny.

Kristin’s personal blog: http://slightlyirritatingandinconvenient.blogspot.com/

Total items: 28

Total weight:

Items: Recyclable
Plastic recycling is not available in our area, it sadly all goes in the trash.

Items: Nonrecyclable
1. 3 restaurant straws (not shown)
2. Garbage bag for the week’s trash (not shown)
3. Dental floss (not shown)
4. Stickers on fruit (not shown)
5. 2 Tortilla chip bags
6. 2 Miss Vickies chip bags
7. Bandaid wrappers (several…)
8. Bronzer compact
9. Lid & seal to vitamin bottle
10. Mushroom plastic wrap & tray
11. Wrapping from fathers day card purchased last year
12. Herb container labels
13. Orange juice pull tab
14. Snap peas bag
15. Salad tub & seal
16. Citronella candle insert
17. Broken plastic fork
18. Fruit gummies bag
19. Ice bag (old)
20. Peanut butter jar
21. Broken pen
22. Salsa jug
23. Seal to bottle of calamine lotion
24. Seal to glass jar of peanut butter
25. Bacon packaging
26. Bread bag
27. Hair clip card
28. Ziploc bag w/hole

What items can I easily replace with plastic free or less plastic alternatives?
-3 restaurant straws: working on this!
-2 Tortilla chip bags: not something that can be purchased fresh here, but we could do without.
-2 Miss Vickies chip bags: ditto.
-Bronzer compact: the organic compact I use has very little plastic, but I’m always looking for something better!
-Lid & seal to vitamin bottle: we’re opting for quality on this product, and sadly it comes in plastic :(
-Mushroom plastic wrap & tray: when making pad thai we always buy this variety pack of mushrooms rather than the plain white mushrooms that go in the paper bags
-Wrapping from fathers day card purchased last year: cards don’t usually have any plastic components… I bought this from a local “artisan” at the farmers market
-Herb container labels: I could have started my herbs this year from seed if we hadn’t gone on vacation in the spring! Even some of my seed packets from previous years are plastic however… I was able to return the pots, just not the ID tags.
-Orange juice pull tab: was on sale…
-Snap peas bag: impulse buy for camping trip. Can’t wait to get them fresh from the farmers market!
-Salad tub & seal: actually, those seeds in plastic pouches are for lettuces! They’re in the ground already!
-Citronella candle insert: I bought a bunch of these candles in tin buckets a few years ago when they were on clearance in the fall…
-Broken plastic fork: I have a TON in the camping gear that will be around for ages until they all “go to heaven”. We have an old set of dining room cutlery that will replace it.
-Fruit gummies bag: another impulse buy for camping, not gonna lie.
-Ice bag (old): was in the freezer since Christmas. There’s still another in there…
-Peanut butter jar: new PB is a glass jar!
-Salsa jug: can buy in glass, but the big plastic jug is a mere $0.50 more than the glass jar that’s 1/3 the size… usually we buy from the local guy at the market though.
-Seal to bottle of calamine lotion: all the options at the store were in plastic :( So very many bug bites….
-Seal to glass jar of peanut butter: a big improvement on the plastic jar!
-Bread bag: I have yet to manufacture the time in my day to do this… I intended to bake this afternoon actually….
-Hair clip card: a (nice) metal hair clip is hard to find, but will last longer than a cheaper plastic clip that would break in no time…
-Ziploc bag w/hole: reused many times

What items would I be willing to give up if a plastic free alternative doesn’t exist?
-3 restaurant straws
-Wrapping from fathers day card purchased last year
-Herb container labels
-Hair clip card
-Ziploc bag w/hole

What items are essential and seem to have no plastic-free alternative?
-Garbage bag for the week’s trash
-Stickers on fruit
-Bandaid wrappers

What lifestyle change(s) might be necessary to reduce my plastic consumption?
We’re striving for a plastic free camping experience. On our (2 day) trip this week we took home all of our plastic & everything else was either burned (eggshells, corn cobs, soggy lettuce etc) or brought home for recycling (empty bottles). Nothing went in the campground garbage cans, which I’m pretty proud of! There are 6 items on the list this week that were directly related to the camping trip however, which I’m not terribly impressed about. I need to curb my junk food consumption further. More advance camping snacks, less last minute shopping.

What one plastic item am I willing to give up or replace this week?
Peanut Butter (in plastic jars) is gonna go. We used up the last of it on our camping trip & have since bought a new jar (we don’t usually eat a lot of it, but the new brand is phenomenal! I think we’ll be going through more than usual for a bit!). The glass jar does however have a plastic seal around the lid, but it’s certainly an improvement. There are health food stores in Calgary where we can buy bulk PB (in our own containers), so maybe we’ll get some when we’re there in August.

What other conclusions, if any, can I draw?

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