Plastic Free June

So, it’s meant to be Plastic Free July, but I was a eager beaver? Or figured it might help others to start analysing before it’s too late for you readers to get on board.

On Friday 1 June, I started collecting all my waste that wasn’t destined for the worm farm or recycling.  I didn’t photograph the following no longer so fresh ingredients: onion skins and ends, lemons, and off ricotta cheese and similar.  None of these are OK for the worm farm.

I’ve also skipped photographing dental floss and cotton buds.

But the rest… in photographic glory.  A third of the way through the month.

Treated myself to 12 coloured pens for decorating my paper journal
Top is the wires and flowers not used to make a flower crown. Bottom left is the not rubber bands and floristry tape. A single use Opal card the day I forgot my normal card. A wrapped for a tin of mints. The little inner cap from a bottle of sauce.
Top left is the plastic sleeve from a card, and the seal from the envelope. On top is a sheet from tablets – this was a month on one sheet, better than a week per sheet :s. A cucumber wrapper and asparagus plasque. Foam trays which I will return and cling wrap from these trays and other vege. A dirty plastic peanut butter jar.
Top right is a yarn bag full of plastic sleeve from two weeks of flower purchases – for church and a flower crown

Ok, so what could I do better with?

Flowers are part of my volunteering time, and I really enjoy the creation of ‘things’.  No all flowers come wrapped in plastic, but it’s not possible to get certain types with plastic wrap.  I can RedCycle this plastic though; along with the cling film from fruit and vege trays. The green tape is from making a flower crown and not something I use most of the time; like the wires.

Fruit foam trays will go back to the local green grocer where I expect them to be reused, as it’s a sole trader.  I buy cheaply priced items like this – those aiming to prevent food waste.  Also, snow peas and sugar snaps ONLY come on trays.  I reuse the large plastic bag from grocery store spinach and refill at the green grocer 🙂

Pen packaging and in time the pens.  You can buy pens loose, but I did like the price ($12.50 for 12.  A militant zero waster would have done without.  And I’ll admit I have some coloured pens from scouring the work stationary supplies.

Cucumber of the lebanese variety are always wrapped.  And others aren’t. (Aside: I paid $3 (!!) for a singular cuc yest!).  I have found that the long Lebanese cucumbers can last longer, grow less mould and shrivel less.  I will RedCycle the plastic.  I buy a cucumber a week on average, and this was the first Lebanese is a long time.

Peanut butter jar is a tricky one.  I’ve worked to use a spatular to get as much as possible out.  I can wash it up.  Or give it to the dog as a game to getting to the last scraps – she’d love that I reckon.

Circling back to the unphotographed waste – I am planning to go back to buying plastic free cotton buds, as I feel even if they end up in landfill, longer term they have a chance of breaking down in a way that plastic tubes in cotton buds do not.

I think will this account complete, I’ll take out the trash (with the cheese, onion and lemons) with the items that won’t RedCycle.

How do you think your bin audit would fare?

One Reply to “Plastic Free June”

  1. Cotton buds on plastic sticks annoy me. We buy the ones with the paper sticks but they cost double 🙁 I do wash out peanut butter jars but it’s a serious nuisance. I have scraped my hands trying to get to the bottom of them! A local bulk store sells peanut butter and I could bring my own container, but I prefer the kind without sugar, which they don’t carry. Over all, I am taking home a fair number of plastic clamshell packagings from things like salad greens and peaches (which used to come in cardboard baskets).

    How are you doing with your journal? I tried to get into handwriting a journal with colour pens in January but quickly lost interest.

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