The last ten days have not been that successful. There is plastic wrapped around EVERYTHING!!! It's so darn hard to avoid plastic packaging when doing the grocery shop. Here's a list of things I've found that I couldn't find not packaged in plastic: sour cream, cheese, cucumbers (They have a skin! Why do they need to be shrink wrapped??), pre-sliced bread, toothpaste, dog treats (well you probably can but Henry dog has that many allergies & food issues that we're pretty much stuck in what we buy him) and this week we had to buy batteries for the smoke alarms and there's no plastic-free option there either!
To top it off, on about Day 11 or 12 I had to pop to the supermarket for two things. I got chatting to a friend at the checkout and totally didn't see the checkout lady put my two items in a plastic bag until she was handing it to me with my receipt. #fail. I know I could have refused the bag but she was already dealing with the next customer and I didn't want to be 'that' difficult person.
Fair to say these last ten days have left me feeling a bit depleted of enthusiasm for Plastic Free July. I almost cried at the amount of plastic in our trolley at the last grocery shop. But as Matt pointed out, even if we're not "plastic-free" at least we're so much more conscious of it now and the amount of single-use plastics in our trolley was so much less than previously. Looking for alternatives might also just nudge manufacturers to give us plastic-free choices in the future too!
So instead of focusing on how hard it is to be single-use plastic free, I'll share some of the things we've done in our household to minimise single-use plastics. I think Matt and I have both agreed we're not going to be 100% plastic-free or zero-wasters anytime soon, but we choose to believe that the changes we're making all count. If every household made just a couple of changes it could save millions of pieces of plastic going into our water a year.
Easy changes we've made to reduce single-use plastic:
None of this stuff is hard work or expensive. In fact I'd argue that since we've made these changes our grocery bill has remained the same. While some plastic free options are more expensive, we're saving in other areas such as not buying expensive cleaning products anymore or bottled water!
What changes have you made in your household for reducing plastic waste?