Plastic pollutes! By now almost all of us are aware of the huge environmental impact plastic packaging can have. But in the 21st century it is almost impossible to avoid. Even here at Natural Essentoils we use plastic bottle for some of our products ( they are recyclable so if you don't recycle we can't be friends! ) and whilst we are committed to going totally plastic free, and our latest product has 0% plastic packaging, we have to accept that at this point we are part of the problem. As we follow our scheduled plan to reach our plastic free goal, there are lots of things we can all do to help reduce plastic use. As a small business or an individual we cannot change the world, but if we all make small changes and work together, we can make a difference.
Here is our list of 4 simple changes you can make RIGHT NOW to help reduce plastic waste:
Buy loose fruit and vegetables
One of the easiest ways to immediately reduce your plastic waste is to buy loose fruit and veg. Many of us are guilty of buying pre-packaged salads, fruit and veg, and whilst it can be convenient there are actually two really good reasons why you shouldn't. 1) There is less plastic packaging and if you reuse plastic bags you can reduce plastic waste even further. And 2) You can genuinely save yourself so much money. By selecting your own produce items you can buy the exact amount you want and not the amount the supermarkets tell you that you need.
Why not try you local greengrocer or market?
Ditch those plastic straws
This is one idea pretty much all of us know about already, but are we actually doing it? The amount of single use plastic straws that we use in the UK has become such a problem that the Government is considering an outright ban. In fact many companies including Wetherspoons and McDonalds have already made the decision to replace their plastic straws.
At home its easy. You can now find paper straws in almost all supermarkets. But what about when you are out? Well, ask yourself “Do I really need a straw?”. If the answer is yes, why not invest in your own reusable straw and keep it in your bag for those beverage related emergencies.
These stainless steel drinking straws, with cleaning brush from Boobalou are ideal
Say goodbye to those plastic bottles
Single use plastic bottles are one of the worst offenders when it comes to plastic pollution, and sadly most of the time we don't even need them. We use around 1 and a half billion plastic bottles per day on earth! That is a HUGE number! So often plastic bottles are the things we see on those wildlife documentaries, floating along in country sized plastic islands and being digested by sea life!
The answer is so simple. Invest in a good quality reusable aluminium or glass water bottle. Fill it up at home or at one of many places across the country that will allow you to top up your water bottle. Schemes like the amazing www.refill.org.uk can help you find somewhere. Not only are you reducing plastic waste and saving yourself money but many people find this encourages them to drink more water, which has so many health benefits
These glass bottles with an anti-slip silicone sleeve from Miu Color are eco friendly and extremely durable. Available at Amazon now
Get a bag for life in your life
5p!! A supermarket carrier bag if 5p! GOOD! For far too long our streets, waters and landfill sites have been full of plastic carrier bags. Some scientists have estimated they can take up to 100 years to decompose, other experts say they never fully decompose.
The good news is that since the charge for plastic bags arrived in 2015, use of the bags has dropped by over 80%.
If you are still using them ask yourself why? Even if you didn't care about their environmental impact, what about the money you could save yourself. You can pick up a bag for life in all supermarkets, often for as little as 40p!
If you think you are too cool for a Tesco bag for life, take a look at these organic cotton bags from Turtle Bags who put human rights and fair trade at the forefront of everything they do!