Emma Reynolds' Beginner's Guide To #PlasticFreeJuly.
Photo by Jo Lanta
Deciding to go plastic free for one month
This is the first step to making great ecological change across the world. However, it can be hard to make the commitment when you don’t know where to start. As aforementioned in Tru’s launch of #PlasticFreeJuly, you only must commit to refusing to use one plastic item for the whole of July. In this post I want to go through some of the basic plastics you can select to get rid of for July to make it easier for you.
Takeaway Coffee Cups – A really good way to not use takeaway coffee cups from stores such as Costa or Starbucks is to invest in a reusable coffee cup. These are available from most high street retailers and even some designer brands have begun to create them. Some coffee shops even offer to reduce the price of your drink by 30p or similar as an incentive to you if you choose to use a reusable cup.
Fruit and Vegetables – These days in stores there are so many ways that fruit and vegetables are packaged in plastic for no necessary reason when they could easily be packaged in a paper bag. One thing you can do for July is to refuse to buy bags of apples or bananas that are packaged in plastic and instead go to a green grocers and buy all your fruit and vegetables loosely, either bring your own bag to put them in or use some of the brown paper bags that are offered instead.
Plastic Shopping Bags – This is one of the most widely swapped plastics in the whole of #PlasticFreeJuly. Canvas bags are sold in most retailers and there are even designers who make them. Some supermarkets even create their own branded reusable, recyclable bags and so it is easy to buy one for as little as 60p. Many stores run a “bag for life” scheme too, so if your bag does break, then you can get a new replaced one for free if you return the broken one to the supermarket.
Plastic Straws – These are some of the most problematic plastics that are taking the world by storm in terms of injuring animals in the ocean. They are important for us to replace with paper or biodegradable straws which is what a lot of companies have already started to do, but it’s easy for you to make your own stand too. You can purchase collapsible metal straws online, and regular metal ones so that you can always take a stand over plastic straws in your drinks, no matter where you are.
Plastic Water Bottles – This one is super easy to try and cut out. Most water bottles are in plastic and are often not widely recycled. It is a great alternative to buy a reusable water bottle that you can get from most high street retailers and use refill stations all over the town you live in for water, or make a point of tipping drinks out of plastic bottles into your reusable one.
The Bakery – When heading to the bakery, pre-prepare and take boxes for iced doughnuts and similar unless they have paper bags, and bring reusable bags to pack your bread rolls and similar in. Avoid buying anything pre-packaged in plastic!
Meat, Fish & Deli – Try to avoid the plastic trays that they put meat in in stores and go to butchers instead where they can package your meat into your own tubs. These avoids wasting plastic you do not need to waste.
Reduce, Reuse & Recycle – Make sure that if you cannot bring yourself to fully let go of one plastic that you are at least recycling as much as possible! It really helps and you will be making such a difference to the world around you and saving our planet! | Tru. 🌱
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