Plastic free July – is it workable for a busy family?

Plastic free July is a campaign led by the Plastic Free Foundation. Their aim is to get people to take part in the challenge to stop using single use plastic. 

It definitely sounds like something we all want to be a part of, but how practical is it to fit these changes into everyday life?

Plastic it seems is in everything, even when you can’t see it! From tea bags to chewing gum to wet wipes! You probably already take your own reusable bags to do the shopping and have bought the family all reusable water bottles but what other changes can we incorporate into our busy lives?

So what can we do to reduce plastic use with our food?

Takeaway coffee cups – bring your own reusable cup. I’ve started carrying one in the car and one in my bag and most coffee shops offer a discount when using your own cup so it’s a win, win!

Buy fresh bread that comes in a brown paper bag or no bag. Most bakery’s do this and even the fresh bread section in most supermarkets are in paper bags. 

Find a local milkman for reusable glass bottles. A quick google search should provide you with a few contacts. There is even a www.findmeamilkman.net site!

Freeze food in reusable containers – glass jars, metal containers, greaseproof paper for short freezing periods or aluminium foil can be  used instead of plastic freezer bags.

Wrap food in reusable Beeswax wraps. These were a revelation for us as a family, no more sandwiches wrapped in cling film! They are washed in warm soapy water and used day after day. You can wrap cheese in them, left over fruit and vegetables to store in the fridge. (Not advisable for raw meat.) We’ve bought some from  Www.beeswaxwraps.co.uk and Etsy – BeeHappyWaxWraps. 

Buy a set of silicone lids to cover bowls, etc. Again these are perfect for storing food in the fridge, you can use whatever container it’s already in and the lids come in different sizes and are super stretchy. There are lots on Amazon and EBay.  

Take your own containers when buying meat, fish & cheese. Most delicatessens, butchers and fishmongers are more than happy for you to supply your own. This is more tricky in a supermarket and a no go for on line shoppers.

Change from tea bags to your own brand of loose leaf tea or find a brand that does plastic free tea bags. We’ve found Clipper, We Are Tea, Pukka & Teapigs. Clipper being a favourite for us. These are all readily available in most supermarkets. 

These are just a few ways to cut down on single use plastic that we as a family are doing. We have easily made these small changes easily without much extra effort, and they have become part of our daily routine. Check out www.plasticfreejuly.org for more information and ideas. 

Kirsty Wilson Close

Instagram  kirsty_in_the_kitchen

Food Styling, Food Writing, Food Lover

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