January 27, 2011

Plastic Challenge: Sabrina L, Week 2

Sabrina's plastic waste

Name: Sabrina Lutes and family, 2 adults and 1 2-year old

Week: 2
Personal Info:

See full description in all of Sabrina’s posts.

Total items: 62

Total weight:

Items: Recyclable
2 milk jugs
1 vinegar bottlle
2- yogurt containers (these were already in the fridge)
1- coconut oil container
2- bronne soap
7- packing plastic from an iPad doc prepurchased before plastic fast
3 envelope
5 plastic bags
1 meat tray
2 food containers
1 raisin box top
2 milk tops and rings
1 misc plastic lid
2 canned food cans

Items: Nonrecyclable
1 packing plastic
3 Cheese wrappers
1 name tie on c/a veggies
2 yeast packets
2 meat wrappers
1 rice packet
1 food thermometer clam shell
1 spice pack
1 organic veggie tag
4 misc plastics
2 shrimp package plastics
1 cereal bag
1 lid
1 meat package
1 Mylar balloon, ugh it was a Christmas purchase from an aunt
Some not pictured
1 set ear plugs
Ice-cream container

What items can I easily replace with plastic free or less plastic alternatives?
Going to try and buy more meat in my own containers, torn on this one because we have amazing, local grass fed meats. All sold in plastic. Working on it. I’ve talked to every farmer I know until they are tired of me!
Getting ready to try making yogurt tonight!
Canned foods, talked to my local market tonight and they said I can bring cloth, glass whatever to fill bulk.
We have issued a moratorium on ordering things until we know how it’s packaged, what’s in it, and how it’s shipped
We are getting on the anti junk mail lists and returning solicitations with notes from companies we do business with but don’t want the extra mail

What items would I be willing to give up if a plastic free alternative doesn’t exist?
Most non food items
Mylar balloons

What items are essential and seem to have no plastic-free alternative?
Dairy, I am in communication with the local cheese people too…searching alternatives

What lifestyle change(s) might be necessary to reduce my plastic consumption?
Weve already begun making bread, I need to organize myself better to be able to shop with my own containers, with an active toddler this could prove comical at best, but I will be implementing this weekend. We’ve been eating lean until then and using up stuff, which accounts for most the plastic load this week. I’ve begun talking to everyone I know, and bugging store owners. May be even starting a petition to my wonderful local food store to stop wrapping the organic produce in cling wrap and compostable containers, if I need 6 potatoes I have to get 3 packages!

What one plastic item am I willing to give up or replace this week?

What other conclusions, if any, can I draw?
It’s not living plastic free that is hard, it’s our systems that have been set up to make it that way that make it hard! I’ve had to be creative, think about how things would have worked backbefore had so much convenience. you have to get involved with the people at the stores, it’s not just a incognito endeavor of running in, grabbing food and go! That people want to do the right thing, that it is all so overwhelming, and starting is what’s hard!

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