Contributor: Home of Juniper
Zero Waste Shopping – your eco-friendly solution to less waste!
The amount of rubbish we, the human race, produce has been increasingly acknowledged and discussed. So it is time to get proactive, productive and positive about what we can do to decrease our waste. There are two main ways to help decrease waste; we can produce less or recycle more.
Here are a few ideas on how you can decrease waste by making changes in your shopping habits.
Take a Bag
With Zero Waste shopping, start as you mean to go on, take a bag! A great starting point for Zero Waste shopping is to take your own carrier. Whether it is re-using plastic bags or using fabric bags you have made or purchased. There are some lovely options, including ethically made cotton shoppers from Home of Juniper. They may cost more than a 5p bag in the short term,but in the one term you save money and the planet.
Changing Shopping Habits
Once you are out shopping, one of the most obvious answers is buy less, whether it is food, clothes or homeware. Not only do you waste less by doing this, you also save money. Did you know it can take up to 2700 litres of water to make a cotton t-shirt? (source: www.worldwildlife.org). This doesn’t mean you need to not buy anything, it means you need to think before you buy. Some of our shopping habits are just that, habits. So buying less doesn’t necessarily come easy, but you shouldn’t feel guilty,feeling positive about your new zero waste shopping habits will help you. There are some wonderful tips available on capsule wardrobes, from blogs such as Curiously Conscious.
Zero Waste Shopping
Food shopping is the area where most of us need to make changes. For decades we have become used to buying things in plastic, and there is still a long way to go on zero waste shopping, but there are also some great ways to start.
Our tips for minimising food waste are:
- Shop local and independent, for example at your local grocers (who usually useless packaging than bigger brands).
- Don’t buy pre-packet veg, it may take a little longer, but buying veg and fruit from the pick you own section and placing it either straight in your bag or in paper bags available is a small and simple way to minimise plastic waste.
- Go to your local plastic free shop, these wonderful shops are arriving across the UK, but don’t panic if where you live hasn’t got its own plastic free shop yet, there are some fantastic online alternatives including plasticfreepantry.co.uk and milkandmore.co.uk . Plastic Free Pantry is based in Nottingham but ship nationwide from only £3.50. Milk and More are London based, and they do what they say in the title and deliver milk and more. They even bring you milk in a glass bottle, something which is beautifully nostalgic every time it happens, even better Milk and More have just invested in electric milk floats to be more environmentally friendly. There are more places online and in cities to find, trying searching online for plastic free shops in your area, or check out findmeamilkman.net to find your closest milk delivery brand.
- Plastic Swaps. There are an increasing number of innovative plastic swaps, including coffee cups, bamboo toothbrushes, food wraps and bar soap. All created to lessen single use plastic and waste. A few of our favourites include handmade soaps available from Home of Juniper; bamboo toothbrushes and coffee cups from Atlas and Ortus; and bar shampoo from The Funky Soap Shop.
As Zero waste becomes more popular, it will also become easier. There are some talented individuals and brands making it easier now. Zero waste shopping is an important way to minimise the negative impact you have on the world. But it is also important to enjoy the process. Enjoy finding new shops and new ways to shop. Hopefully we have given you a few ideas to start you off.