Advanced search

Going plastic-free.

(54 Posts)
RubberTreePlant Wed 15-May-19 14:23:33

Or at least, near-plastic-free.

Is it possible?

Has anyone managed it?

RubberTreePlant Wed 15-May-19 14:29:34

Certain things seem particularly difficult to avoid. Prescription medications in blister packs, for example. Cars all have some plastic parts.

RubberTreePlant Wed 15-May-19 15:15:58


Will this is discouraging sad

Fere Wed 15-May-19 15:23:37

I was unpacking my shopping on Sunday and was thinking that my habits would need to change. Not impossible, but I would have to for instance learn not to buy and make my own hummus, no idea what to do about flat bread we are buying instead of sliced bread.
What about frozen veg? I know in the big independent Nursery where they also sell food there are containers with frozen vegetables, so that may be doable.
Definitely planning meals around those changing habits will take a while to establish.

What about soft fruit like strawberries? Nearly impossible without buying them in plastic containers.
I think at Morrison's they promised to "removing plastic packaging from fruit and vegetables, phase out black plastic trays and introduce reusable own-brand plastic packaging. ... Making more packaging recyclable. One of the first pieces of packaging to be replaced will be black plastic trays, used for fresh meat and fish."
I must check them again.

RubberTreePlant Wed 15-May-19 15:40:54

Retailers switching back to cardboard punnets would be easy enough.

How does the frozen veg in containers thing work?

RubberTreePlant Wed 15-May-19 15:49:02

Beverages were quite easy (milk delivered in bottles, water filter, paper straws, maybe a soda stream next). Food is proving harder. Toiletries and cleaning stuff looks harder still. I have made a start with bar soap and solid shampoo, though.

Fere Wed 15-May-19 16:27:33

There are huge freezers with individual containers and you just fill a plastic tub they provide (or I guess your own, I haven't asked for details) and can check weight on scales nearby.
With soda stream - are gas containers recyclable? I would prefer not to use any flavours.

I think few supermarkets are piloting collections of non-hard plastic. That would help but it should not excuse anyone from finding alternatives.

Cloudtree Wed 15-May-19 16:32:37

I think its still incredibly difficult unless you're prepared to really limit the things you buy (although farm shops etc make it easier)

Cloudtree Wed 15-May-19 16:33:18

Im assuming you mean single use plastic free?

Fere Wed 15-May-19 16:36:08

My comments were about single use plastic.
I bought a punnet of strawberries. I can recycle that box but inside was a lining made out of bubble wrap. 🤔

RosaWaiting Wed 15-May-19 16:39:51

you are dedicated; my mum works really hard at this and neither of us have thought of medication in blister packs, but that's a pressure that consumers will have to put on pharma. Gotta be honest - I don't fancy our chances.

re toiletries, probably have a think about what you need. My mother uses Astral for face and body and I'm thinking I might start the same. Also have a colleague who buys massive blocks of shea butter.

RosaWaiting Wed 15-May-19 16:40:40

cleaning stuff - what happens if you use soap flakes, shake them in a bottle with water and use that for cleaning surfaces and hard floors?

Fere Wed 15-May-19 16:46:51

I only ever used soap flakes in washing babies clothes, nearly 2 decades ago.
There was a lot of lather in my washing machine!

DianaPrincessOfThemyscira Wed 15-May-19 16:47:23

I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately. I want us as a family to start making some changes.

I’ve bought these bags for fruit and veg. We have a great shop nearby that does a vast array of food.

We eat a hell of a lot of meat - we’ve collectively agreed we will cut down. I contacted our local butcher, they still wrap in plastic but they’ll weigh and put into tubs if you take them in.

Not sure what to do about yoghurts and stuff - currently the kids have a Frube type thing in packed lunches, frozen so they keep the food cool till lunch time. We could easily swap for the larger tubs and decant I suppose.

We buy washing powder in a plastic tub from Costco but of course we can easily switch that out for one that comes in a cardboard one. Not sure what to do about other washing things - we use hard soap bars already, but how do you stop things like surface cleaner and bleach? I don’t use a lot of bleach but I’m not prepared to completely give it up.

We don’t have any anywhere we could buy loose spices or rice or pasta, and of course those bags are non-recyclable. The best we can do at this time I think is buy in bulk.

DianaPrincessOfThemyscira Wed 15-May-19 16:48:23

Mediation should be easy. It’s not a million years ago that tablets were counted into glass bottles after all.

RosaWaiting Wed 15-May-19 16:48:33

Fere I did say cleaning surfaces and hard floors

washing powder often comes in a cardboard box, so presume not on OP's list.

DianaPrincessOfThemyscira Wed 15-May-19 16:48:48

*medication not mediation!

Fere Wed 15-May-19 17:14:42

I would say soap flakes should be OK for hard floors and any surfaces, just dissolve them in some boiling hot water.

Windygate Wed 15-May-19 17:24:12

I'm aiming for plastic free but it's incredibly hard. I looked at a salad bowl yesterday that's says it's made from bamboo. Is that an eco viable option?

DianaPrincessOfThemyscira Wed 15-May-19 17:25:06

Pretty sure bamboo is good. It grows really fast.

DianaPrincessOfThemyscira Wed 15-May-19 17:28:36

Ok - bamboo eco friendly but is quite invasive.

RosaWaiting Wed 15-May-19 17:54:23

Windy do you actually need it? One of the first things I think re being eco friendly is that we need to reduce the sheer amount of stuff in circulation.

Windygate Wed 15-May-19 18:19:54

Rosa I absolutely agree with your thinking. My old salad bowl has died of old age (20 + years) so I need/would like a lightweight replacement due to pathetic arthritic hands. I'm still using my old Tupperware etc I see no point in throwing away for the sake of it.

firstimemamma Wed 15-May-19 19:01:08

I'm definitely not 'plastic free' but have tried to cut down. Here are some pointers:

-Milk and more deliveries instead of plastic milk bottles

-Buying plastic free fruit and veg from green grocers instead of supermarket

-Cutting down on toiletries and / or switching to lush (lush's little black pots can be returned to store for recycling)

-Buy coconut oil in a glass jar (Holland and Barrett's) and use it as a body moisturiser (it has other cosmetic uses too e.g lip balm) to save on plastic cosmetics packaging

-Look into splosh cleaning products

-Use diluted vinegar (optional - add some lemon juice) for cleaning windows and surfaces

-Obvious - avoid drinks that come in plastic bottles, single-use cups, plastic bags, plastic straws and cutlery etc.

Good luck op smile

RosaWaiting Wed 15-May-19 19:08:53

the problem I find with vinegar is the smell - horrible.

Join the discussion

Registering is free, quick, and means you can join in the discussion, watch threads, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Get started »