Join the Campaign to End Waste!
Almost everyone recycles. Recycling is certainly to be seriously encouraged
However, the act of' recycling more' means that we are buying more things. Most of those things we are buying are things we really don't need. And, sadly, many of the things we buy come in excess packaging.
According to statistics, packaging increased by 13% between 1999 and 2005. After all, packaging is a big business.That useless packaging makes up a third of an average household waste.
Supermarkets are the worst offenders. Items such as sausages, cereals & pizzas are often packaged
twice with plastic and cardboard. The other day in Stop & Shop, I saw individually wrapped figs. Honest.
This insistence on packaging does tremendous damage to our environment. We simply don't have the space to dump this trash. If incinerated, it releases greenhouse gasses. Recycling helps, but the
process itself uses energy. Disposal is not the point. The solution is not to produce the packaging in the first place. Here's where you come in. Really look at the item in question. Do you really need that double packaged pizza?? Isn't there another pizza with out the double packaging? I won't even ask you about the figs. Who, in the name of sanity wants to unwrap figs??
The problem of waste is not limited to packaging. Food waste is a significant problem too. Too many
supermarkets encourage customers to buy more than they need. Too many supermarkets trim off lettuce, spinach, cabbage, etc and throw it away. Guess what? Those trimmings are good! If you don't want to eat them, feed them to the neighbors rabbits or compost them. Don't let them end up in the landfill. If you compost them, you're feeding the Earth.
Some supermarkeyts seem to be catching on...but it isn't happening fast enough. We need to prod them.
I drop a note at the customer service counter with a list of products I didn't buy and why. The list is usually written on a used envelope. I like to make a point!
It is up to us to prod them because it is about us, each of us. Do our apples have to nestled in sytrofoam trays and then covered in plastic wrap?
A step further. Do our electronics need so much packaging?
Some packaging is necessary, but this is far past ridiculous. That packaging is usually made from petroleum, it is transported...all along the chain, it uses oil. Do we really need to use what is a dwindling resource on disposable packaging? No, we do not.
There are signs of hope. As more of us recycle, we are beginning to realise
just how much unnecessary material we are accumulating. This is prompting
us to confront the wastefulness of our consumer culture. But we have a
mountain to climb. That is where you, our readers, can play a part. We are
asking you to e-mail or send us examples of ludicrous or unnecessary
packaging that you discover. Let us form a movement. Let us hold those retailers accountable. If they aren't willing to change. Shop elsewhere.
Remember, use tote bags. Brianna & I use about 5 or 6 plastic shopping bags per year. We use totes. You can too.
If you want to see some very cool totes, check ours out! If you mention this article when you purchase a tote, we'll give you a something nice! Just mention excess packaging in customer comments on the order page.