Sunday, 21 September 2008

Day 14

This morning I shopped at our Tobacco Factory Market, however even markets are not always waste free zones. I bought two lots of cheese. The first was wrapped carefully in greaseproof paper, but the second was ready wrapped in cling film. I wonder if cling film can be washed and reused, or will it lose its 'clinginess'? The chicken came in a plastic bag which can definitely be reused.

A brief stop off in Aldi was not particularly successful. I bought three things, none of which I can do without in the long term, and none of which I have so far been able to find without plastic. They are sunflower oil, spaghetti and pasta spirals. I can buy olive oil in glass bottles, so why not sunflower or vegetable oil? And why can't pasta come in paper wrappers? Flour and sugar do.

So now to the last bin of the week:
  • inner shiny wrapper from tea bags (I believe Clipper teabags come without an inner wrapper, and they are fair trade)
  • 2 inner plastic wrappers from two Git mixes for wadas and sambhar (I bought these at Masala Bazaar, a new Indian supermarket I visited yesterday. They came in cardboard boxes and I suspected there would be inner plastic wrappers, but I couldn't resist. I was right. They were both delicious.)

My visit to Masala Bazaar was a bit of a disappointment. I'd hoped to be able to bulk buy rice in paper sacks but almost everything was wrapped in plastic, except for a few enormous bags wrapped in sackcloth. Rice is another staple I couldn't do without for very long but the only non plastic varieties I have come across are risotto and paella rice in cardboard boxes in Asda.

Anyway the total weight of this week's rubbish is 205g - 25g lighter than last week!

This week I'm going to try to reduce it even further but, more importantly, I'm going to start planning what we shall eat during Zero Waste Challenge Week, as food seems to be where the bulk of my waste lies. I'm not always very good at forward planning so this will be a challenge in itself.


Mrs Green said...

well done; your week's weigh in is brilliant. It's a shame you didn't find all the goodies you were hoping for; plastic turns up in unusual places, doesn't it?

I find the Co-Op sells a big range of oils in glass - do you have one local to you? Failing that, have you checked the code of the bottle - you might find it's a 1 or 2.

Pasta is a challenge. You can buy lasagne in cardboard, so why not other shapes I wonder. I'll let you know if I find anything.

Good luck with the planning for zero waste week - that's what I did and although I'm not good at planning, it was very helpful to try and figure out any potential areas for concern.

Have a great week,
Mrs G x

John Costigane said...

Hi Gai,

The only option where there is no Zero Waste packaging is to transfer from plastic pack to container, handing the empty pack to a member of staff.

I do this at supermarkets, explaining to staff the reasons, which they accept (the customer is always right!).

You may think there is still waste but you are showing the seller the end result of their practices, a valuable lesson which they must be shown until the penny drops.

Best of luck, if you take up the challenge.

just Gai said...

Thanks Mrs G for the tip about the Co-op. Unfortunately we don't have one nearby but I will try to pop into the one in the city centre this weekend.

I've heard about people handing in their plastic packaging at supermarkets before, John, and think it's a very effective means of illustrating the problem and admire your courage in doing it. I'd have to work myself up to it and am not there yet.