February 20, 2011

Plastic Challenge: Sarah Schmiechen, Week 3


Sarah Schmiechen's plastic waste

Name: Sarah Schmiechen

Week: 3

Personal Info:

See my full description in my Week 1 Challenge Post.

Total items: 11 pictured, plus more

Total weight:

Items: Recyclable
Milk container (#1)

Items: Nonrecyclable
Two coffee bags
Ribbon and sticker from a bar of soap
Envelope with window
Cheese wrapper
various produce bags and twist tie
Some wrapping that I can’t remember what it was
Not pictured: plastic garbage bags, meat packaging

What items can I easily replace with plastic free or less plastic alternatives?
I started buying coffee in paper and will also try and use a jar for
the bulk aisle.

The bar of soap was a present. I used it this week when I switched our
pump hand soap dispensers to ceramic soap dishes with bar soap. I will
buy soap with no plastic when I get it next.

We joined a meat CSA so hopefully that will have less packaging.

Still working on the produce bags.

What items would I be willing to give up if a plastic free alternative doesn’t exist?
None this week.

What items are essential and seem to have no plastic-free alternative?
I haven’t yet found cheese in my area that comes without packaging,
even at the farmers market. Will keep looking.

What lifestyle change(s) might be necessary to reduce my plastic consumption?
I switched our hand soap to bar soap, and also switched to bar shampoo,but I need to also find a conditioner replacement.

What one plastic item am I willing to give up or replace this week?
I will work on the envelopes and the produce bags.

Please help…
Plastic free hair care for fine hair. I tried baking soda and vinegar last year and it didn’t work well for me. The bar soap is fine. What about bar conditioners?

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4 Comments on "Plastic Challenge: Sarah Schmiechen, Week 3"

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Thanks for the comments. A big issue for me is that my husband is the one who does all our grocery shopping (I think I mentioned this in my week 1 post). He’s theoretically into all this, but in practice it doesn’t happen as often as I like to think I’d do it. So that’s why I say I’m still working on it. What I really mean is that I’m still working on him! :)

EcoCatLady (AKA Rebecca)

I actually found cheese shares at a CSA in my area. The cheeses all come plastic free, but I haven’t yet decided if it’s worth the small fortune to join.

in the four weeks since starting this challenge i have only acquired 2 new produce bags. i just take the same ones back to the market every week.

Hi Sarah. There are a lot of conditioner bars on Etsy. You should email the seller(s) and ask them to mail it to you without any plastic packaging. https://www.etsy.com/search/handmade?shopname=SoapStore&q=conditioner+bar Have you tried taking a container to a deli and seeing if they’ll put your cheese directly into it? I’m excited because just yesterday I found a completely naked cheese at a local cheese shop in my neighborhood. It’s not even covered in wax. I mean, it’s totally naked — just the rind is exposed. But it’s only local. Shipping cheese requires a ton of packaging, as I’ve discovered.