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The War against plastic waste

edited 18 June 2019 at 9:51AM in Old Style MoneySaving
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  • MoneySeeker1MoneySeeker1 Forumite
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    Yes and Stacey Dooley has a point.

    I certainly hadn't realised the clothes industry is one of the most polluting there is. Certainly one of the main aspects is the way so many clothes these days are only made to last such a brief time.

    I sat down and worked out an exact wardrobe plan as a basis for dressing from here on in and one of my decisions was that I am going to buy normal quality clothes as far as possible (ie what would be described these days as "very good quality") and base my wardrobe round classic (but modern and informal) dressing.

    It does take some hunting to find clothes retailers selling normal quality clothes these days at what I regard as "payable" prices. Two I've found that merit mention so far are Johnstons of Elgin and I duly bought 2 lambswool jumpers from them. Those jumpers cost me £99 each - but they are my normal quality and should last years and do look "quality".

    The other one is "Country Collection". It's necessary to "pick and choose" style-wise from them, as they are for an older age group. But I got two plain merino wool cardigans (£59 each) from them and the firm says their clothes have a "lifetime guarantee". Again, I anticipate having them for years.

    Both firms have their clothes made in Britain still.
    The history books of the future will condemn us - long and hard - for imposing Lockdown.

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  • PasturesNewPasturesNew Forumite
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    Fire_Fox wrote: »
    A suburban street of families and couples only (the voiceover represents all households. Except the quarter ** of single person households and people in very rural areas ....
    .

    Nobody gives a flying f*** about singles. They really don't. Surplus to requirements, let's pretend they don't exist, let's actively disenfranchise them from everything.

    Families, couples, pensioners, are the only legitimate households in the UK. Singles/The Alone are treated like lepers :)
  • Me and DH use oat milk but they come in cartons that cannot be recycled!

    We try to buy only loose fruit and veg but, as shown on the programme, the loose is often quite a lot dearer than the packaged.

    Within the last 6 months two places near me have started selling loose dry foods where you take your own container. They have things like rice, cous cous, lentils, muesli etc. I think this is great but makes me laugh really because we used to have weigh and save years ago and they all closed down.

    One of the places is a nursery and they also sell fruit and veg all loose and at very good prices. I bought a cucumber there for 60p and they were 50p in M&S but wrapped in plastic! Why do they wrap things like cucumber in plastic.

    Both places seem to be doing a roaring trade and customers are happy to shop in both of them. Also means you can buy the exact quantity of rice, pasta etc that you want.

    I live fairly rurally so am actually surprised at having 2 places quite close by. Hopefully more and more will open across the country
  • Kunoichi73Kunoichi73 Forumite
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    I treat myself to a jacket potato for lunch once a week. I get it from a small van near to where I work and I've started taking a reusable plastic box for the chap to put the potato in, rather than the polystyrene container that he normally uses.
  • edited 12 June 2019 at 1:24PM
    PipneyJanePipneyJane Forumite
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    edited 12 June 2019 at 1:24PM
    What a fascinating thread!
    Off topic.

    I have a really bad back (fused bones and prolapsed discs) so when mine goes out fully I cannot even get out of bed.

    I have one of these drinks bottle:

    Not the cheapest (you can usually get them on sale if you don't mind the colour). But you cannot spill the drink and you can control the flow of liquid too. Beware they keep hot drinks warm for a very long time so you may need to add a splash of cold to the drink. Also good at keeping drinks cold too.

    I have found them to be much better than a straw.

    Vouch! Slightly cheaper, but by the same people, are the Avex brand of travel mugs sold occasionally in Costco. They're not as stylish but in all other respects are virtually identical. Ours cost £14 for two and are our regular travel mugs, used at least 3 times a week. The mechanism is the same. (I have both Contigo and Avex mugs.) They NEVER leak. Take the lid off first before handing it over to be refilled in a coffee shop.

    Back on topic, the old mantra of "reduce, re-use and recycle" still holds true in my opinion. Plastic isn't the cause of the problem; the cause is human behaviour and we can all make a difference. There's no need to get rid of your stash of Tupperware or Lock-n-Lock, just look after it well and, when it breaks, recycle it. Here's a few things we do:-
    1. We refill disposable plastic water bottles with tap-water/squash. We've been using the same bottles for years, when they get too battered they go into the recycling.
    2. We take our lunches to work. We each have insulated lunch-bags and bring our own cutlery, too. Lunch is usually a Lock-n-Lock box of leftovers from the night before plus a yoghurt.
    3. The yoghurt comes in 450g thin plastic tubs with a cardboard sleeve, so I decant it into small Lock-n-lock boxes. The cardboard gets recycled, while the tubs get saved to be used as pint glasses for parties or as pots for pot-plants, before being rewashed and recycled.
    4. I travel a lot for work and always take my lunch with me for the first day of the trip (unless flying).
    5. Since it takes almost as much energy to manufacture a small plastic bottle as a large one, we buy large bottles of toiletries and decant them into smaller ones to use (recycled pump action soap dispensers for the bathroom and 100ml travel bottles for the suitcase).
    6. Our council does not segregate recycling into categories. It all goes into the one bag, for sorting at the depot. They even accept shredded paper, plastic bags and foil trays so, if I'm not sure something plastic is recyclable - say, old Tupperware - I'll still include it.
    7. We take most of our rubbish home because we can recycle it.
    8. Most of our veg is bought loose from a local farm shop and all the trimmings are composted. We buy our eggs from there, too.
    9. Most of our meat comes from a local butcher who knows the farmers who raise the animals. Yes, it costs more than supermarket meat, but the quality is superior.

    - Pip
    "Be the type of woman that when you get out of bed in the morning, the devil says 'Oh crap. She's up.' " o:)

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  • This is a very interesting and timely thread to start. I have been attempting to be more eco-friendly for about a year now. To begin with it seemed very daunting but as I have done things gradually it has been surprisingly manageable and in fact I have saved money rather than spent more. Here is a list of the things I have done:


    Replaced shower gel with natural bar soap (with no palm oil).


    Buy my shampoo and conditioner from the bodyshop who take back all packaging once finished with.


    Used up all my bathroom products before replacing with more eco-friendly options but only after I have researched whether they are really necessary, i.e. I don't buy facial moisturiser now I just use a sunscreen.


    Started using a flannel instead of the plastic body puff things.


    Buy a charcoal floss which comes in a glass bottle and for which I can buy refills.


    Bought a glass dispenser for liquid hand soap for the kitchen and bathroom and refill it at a refill shop.


    I clean the kitchen and bathroom with a diluted version of white vinegar and peppermint essential oil instead of buying all the different cleaners you can get.


    I buy an eco-friendly washing powder now instead of liquid and use less than it says on the pack and it is cleaning everything fine.


    I refill my washing up liquid at a refill shop


    I buy bread from a baker and ask for it in a paper bag. It keeps for about 5 days as long as you only slice off what you want when you want it. I use it for toast towards the end of the time.


    I buy my veg either from a veg box company or from the local market stall and I also try to buy only seasonal veg and fruit.


    Whenever I need something I see if I can source it at a charity shop. That can mean that I wait until I see it in a charity shop and then I just put it in my bag rather than having lots of packaging.


    I batch cook meals and put them in freezable portion size containers. Some are plastic and I have found some glass ones which I admit I did buy new.


    I made my own dishcloths, handkerchiefs and "unpaper" towels which can all be washed and re-used.


    I bought beeswax wraps to use to wrap up sandwiches and the like instead of using cling film and foil.


    I have stopped using greaseproof paper for cake tins. I just grease them with butter and flour it - works every time so far.


    I buy butter now instead of margarine.


    I buy all my vegetable oils etc in glass bottles rather than the plastic options.


    I crocheted some make up remover pads which can be washed and reused instead of using cotton wool.


    I buy less meat.


    I have found and buy yogurt in glass jars.


    I have still got a way to go but I am quite proud of the progress I have made. I watched "War on Plastics" programme and I think it is a little uninformative for someone like me who has been researching and trying to do this already but it is good that it is now out there to try and get more of the general public engaged with this topic. I am single and have no children or pets so it is a bit easier for me to manage this journey but anything that anyone can do is a start.
    Lisa x
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  • Fire_FoxFire_Fox Forumite
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    Georgiepie wrote: »
    We try to buy only loose fruit and veg but, as shown on the programme, the loose is often quite a lot dearer than the packaged.

    One of the places is a nursery and they also sell fruit and veg all loose and at very good prices. I bought a cucumber there for 60p and they were 50p in M&S but wrapped in plastic! Why do they wrap things like cucumber in plastic.

    Cucumbers and their shrink-wrap have been all over the media.

    Significant increase in shelf life: reduces food waste during transportation, in the store AND in the home. SIngle person households notice the shorter life more than families.

    Inane Anita briefly mentioned that some plastic packaging is important for shelf life, but completely failed to inform watchers as to which fruit and vegetables.
    Declutterbug-in-progress.⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️
  • Fire_FoxFire_Fox Forumite
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    I clean the kitchen and bathroom with a diluted version of white vinegar and peppermint essential oil instead of buying all the different cleaners you can get.

    I have still got a way to go but I am quite proud of the progress I have made. I watched "War on Plastics" programme and I think it is a little uninformative for someone like me who has been researching and trying to do this already but it is good that it is now out there to try and get more of the general public engaged with this topic. I am single and have no children or pets so it is a bit easier for me to manage this journey but anything that anyone can do is a start.

    :eek:

    Diluted vinegar is NOT a safe and effective household cleaning product. There are many bacteria and yeasts that thrive in acidic conditions. The full-strength vinegar that you are using was made by such microbes!

    Effective cleaning or degreasing products tend to be alkaline and/ or contain detergents which help break down microbe colonies or cell membranes and their fatty food sources. That is why there are modern detergents or traditional alkaline agents in body wash, shampoo, bar soap, toothpaste, washing up liquid ....

    Peppermint oil smells nice but has limited other benefits, even in a well formulated properly tested commercial product. Concentration, distribution, pH and many other factors are relevant. Please consider using your washing up liquid diluted to clean your kitchen and bathroom.
    Declutterbug-in-progress.⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️
  • Nick_CNick_C Forumite
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    Interesting thread. But single use plastic is not bad.

    Plastic bottles are much lighter than glass, and therfore reduce the amount of fuel required to transport liquids.

    Single use plastic bags are better than single use paper bags for similar reasons. Bags have to be delivered to retailers. The lorry delivering the bags can carry far more plastic bags than paper ones, and they weigh less. And less energy is used in their manufacture.

    Plastic packaging extends shelflife and reduces food waste.

    The problem with single use plastics is that we are not disposing of them properly, and councils have been encouraged to attempt to recycle materials which can't be recycled easily and for which there is no demand / end market.

    We should only be trying to recycle plastic bottles, almost all of which are type 1 or 2 (PET or HDPE). Other single use plastics should go into residual waste and be incinerated with energy recovery (generate electricity and capture the heat for communal heating systems and hot water). We should be incorporating small scale incinerators in residential areas, reducing the energy wasted in collecting waste from our homes and transporting it to a disposal facility.
  • VanladyVanlady Forumite
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    "!the old mantra of "reduce, re-use and recycle" still holds true in my opinion. Plastic isn't the cause of the problem; the cause is human behaviour and we can all make a difference. There's no need to get rid of your stash of Tupperware or Lock-n-Lock, just look after it well and, when it breaks, recycle it" pip

    I'm another one who has been avoiding unnecessary plastic, especially single use, for a long time now and I agree, there's no point in replacing useable tupperware etc until it breaks.
    I have also been avoiding buying anything that contains palm oil, and there's a lot of products that do!, apparently even RSPO certified may contain traces of dirty palm oil. It's a mine field, so I will avoid it until I have more confidence in it.
    I haven't yet seen Hugh''s programme, but hopefully therell be better information/advise for the converted in the coming episodes? And even if not, let's hope the programme is an eye opener/stimulus for the unconverted.
    I have also started to email companies telling them I won't be buyng their products anymore until they change their unnecessary packaging or stop using palm oil.
    I have also started to use soda crystals for cleaning, I was sceptical at first but, I'm very impressed with it and once my conventional cleaners have been used up, I wont be replacing them.
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