Marine Conservation Plastic Challenge Week 2

Marine Conservation Plastic Challenge Week 2

Two days into Week 2 of the Marine Conservation plastic challenge and our regular order of Green Cane Toilet Paper order arrived just in time! These toilet rolls are made completely free from plastic packaging. I personally feel it's important that manufacturers and brands help to make it easy for consumers to make different choices such as plastic free where possible and Green Cane is certainly an easy plastic free switch to make. 

Plastic Free Toilet Paper

Otherwise, to be honest, I'm finding it all rather a struggle. If time wasn't a constraint then it would be easier. Single Use Plastic is everywhere. It seems better to focus on the different choices we can make to minimise plastic litter ending up in our seas rather than the ones we are failing to conquer! So, in Week 2 the challenge for me is choosing plastic free options where possible but not beating myself when I can't!

Aldi's provided apples, red peppers, spring onions, bananas and a swede completely plastic free and of course Organic Eggs in cardboard is a no brainer. It's worth highlighting here that the trade off is generally you can't get Organic Fruit & Veg that is plastic free from a supermarket.

Day 11

Pleased with myself today for I have rescued a Bread Maker from a car boot for just £4 and it works! This means less highly processed bread wrapped in plastic packaging going forward.

Bread Maker

Regular items still being used here:-

Stainless steel water bottles, stainless steel straws, soap nuts for laundry, bamboo toothbrush and bamboo cotton buds. The Lush shampoo bar is still proving to be a good choice.

On the negative, the dishwasher powder from Waitrose packaged completely without plastic is totally rubbish. I think it's too abrasive and it's leaving glasses, saucepans and plates in a really horrible condition after washing. Cannot stick with this, it just doesn't do the job.

Day 12

Today we took the family on an openday tour around the local Veolia UK Waste Management Facility to see what we could learn about household waste and what happens to it. The operation is huge but the thing that struck me the most was the volume of waste they are dealing with. The photographs below show not quite one day's worth of household waste from one City and in fact the bottom photograph showing non recycling waste is just a portion of what they had *in stock* still to be processed. There was a vast amount of textiles in that pile too.

plastic recycling

household waste management

Actually, very little is going to landfill from this waste management centre, I think 95% or 98% of waste was being either recycled or burned and turned into energy. However, it left me thinking more about overall levels of consumption not just about better packaging alternatives.

Days 13 & 14

If this is too much information, I apologise in advance but in the interests of our plastic challenge, it's definitely worth pointing out that switching to reusable sanitary pads makes a difference every single month. I have been using cloth pads for around 3 years now and those in the photo have been with me that long and still look as good as new. My Teenage daughter has her own collection too. There is nothing plastic being flushed away or ending up in landfill from our household on this monthly basis! If you are interested in purchasing reusable menstrual products its definitely worthing checking out Earthwise Girls.

reusable cloth pads

Now to something completely different. The Humble Baked Bean, a regular purchase in our household and probably in most people's households. Why is it that 4 tins held together in some kind of shrinked wrapped packaging cost less than buying 4 tins singularly without plastic packaging? I'm guessing it's marketing, production & transportation reasons but it seems completely unnecessary to me. It's easy enough to buy singles and pay more to avoid the plastic (which we do) but we will continue to try other brands/options.

Baked Beans


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