Plastic-Free July: Week 1

As the old saying goes: A Journey of a Thousand Miles Begins with a Single Step. Let me declare that registering with  Plastic-free July is that step.

Plastic Free July - Choose to Refuse 300ppi

I have a blog called Low-Tox Life to thank for my introduction to Plastic-free July. This is slightly embarrassing given that Alexx lives in Sydney, and the now worldwide phenomenon that is PFJ originated around the corner from me about 6 years ago. Clearly, I have not been paying attention…!

For the uninitiated, Plastic-free July  challenges us to ‘choose to refuse’ single-use plastics for the month of July. Plastic bags, drinking straws, takeaway coffee cups and containers, balloons, disposable utensils and food packaged in plastic containers are all on the hit-list.

To arm you with the best chance of success, PFJ has designed a fabulous  Action Picker, to help you identify the biggest plastic contributors to environmental damage, and how to avoid them.  It still comes as a shock to realise that I have personally contributed thousands of disposable coffee cups to landfill on account of them not being recyclable.

So, after all that’s been said and done, how did PFJ look at my place at the end of Week 1?

Well, let’s start with the good news:

As recommended, I utilized my trusty shopping stash, which saved me countless single-use shopping bags, disposable coffee cups and some meat packaging this week. Big tick! Happy to say that I had these items in my possession before the start of PFJ, so apart from a little assembly, no financial outlay was required.

IMG_1421
A sample of my trusty shopping stash.

And then, the not-so-good news:

The legacy of some not-so-wise shopping purchases made the week prior, combined with some unavoidable purchases made this week, resulted in this much plastic waste this week. Not ideal, but it’s the reality.

The biggest culprits for us were packages associated with:

  • nuts
  • cereals
  • frozen veg
  • bread
  • rice
  • oats
  • legumes
  • milk
  • meat

All is not lost. Treating Week 1 as a reconnaissance mission, I have since scoped out a variety of local, convenient and reliable vendors where I can get my :

  • preferred milk in glass
  • nuts, cereals, bread, legumes, dishwashing liquid, etc using a weigh-&-pay method
  • meat purchases using my BYO containers

Hoping to see a reduced plastic load at the end of next week.

Vert I go! Gradually...

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