April 29, 2012

Plastic Challenge: Rose, Week 1


How do I buy things without packets? ie cereal, rice, pasta etc etc

Location:York, United Kingdom

Name: Rose

Week: 1

Personal Info:

I am a post-grad student living with two housemates (we only really share cleaning stuff and toilet rolls etc). My boyfriend was with me for the weekend.

List of plastic items REFUSED this week. (Yay!)
Two plastic bags while shopping, one I had to refuse twice – “Yes, I’m sure I don’t want one thanks!”

Total items collected: 47

Total weight: 425g

Items: Recyclable
1 conditioner bottle (actually it doesn’t say but I assume its #2)
1 shower gel bottle (#2)
4 snack boxes (#1)
1 water bottle (#1)
4 tetra packs

Items: Nonrecyclable
2 yoghurt pots
5 envelope windows
5 bottle lids
1 clothes tag
6 chocolate wrappers
1 bread bag
1 packet of crisps
2 cereal bags
1 packet from mixed nuts
1 packet from toilet rolls
2 bags which had big charity bags in them
1 cauliflower bag
1 pate packet
1 bag from falafel mix
1 piece of cheese clingfilm
5 apple stickers

What items can I easily replace with plastic free or less plastic alternatives?
I could buy solid shampoo etc and could make my own snacks.
If I shopped more at veg shops I could get veg without bags. Also buy bread and cheese in bakeries/delis with paper bags.

I would like to buy from a scoop shop but it’s so difficult to find one.

What items would I be willing to give up if a plastic free alternative doesn’t exist?
Falafel mix

Most things do have a less plastic alternative – just harder to find.

What items are essential and seem to have no plastic-free alternative?
I guess nothing is essential but if I could have one, it would be the milk in tetrapacks as I’m lactose intolerant and they are my only option.

What lifestyle change(s) might be necessary to reduce my plastic consumption?
I don’t have a lot of free time but I can see that I should make time to shop in bakeries, veg shops, delis etc to reduce plastic packaging.

What one plastic item am I willing to give up or replace this week?
I am going to give up plastic wrapped chocolate (and that’s a big thing for me!) and either buy paper wrapped or make my own snacks. I have already started!
Shampoo etc is also something I’m going to change asap.

What other conclusions, if any, can I draw?
I’m pretty shocked about how much I managed to accumulate – I thought I wasn’t too bad. I’m excited about the challenge to find plastic free alternative though. I’m really glad I did this – it’s made me realise what areas I can improve on.

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