Recently I have found myself becoming increasingly frustrated by plastic packaging. I have always tried to be environmentally friendly but admit that I could do so much more. I would love to use re-fill ingredients but generally they are more expensive.
I was surprised by Hello Fresh packaging as one of the benefits is that everything comes pre-packaged to the size needed, however because of this, so much plastic is used. Each portion of sauce or herbs comes in a plastic sachet so for an average recipe there will be around 3+ sachets that can not be recycled. Yes, it means that people may be wasting less food, but it is easier to use leftover food rather than be supplied with packaging that cannot be recycled.
It is good to see that some companies are taking reducing the use of packaging seriously and I have noticed that generally jigsaws are now being packaged in smaller boxes, but I know the likes of my Grandad would struggle with a smaller box because of the smaller picture so having a large poster inside the box would be helpful (I’m not sure if companies are already doing this).
Around Christmas you see funny posts on social media about parents needing a ‘toolbox’ ready for when children open their presents such as scissors, screwdriver, batteries etc but it is true. Can you imagine the disappointment when children unwrap their present and then can’t get into it because of the numerous unnecessary plastic clips and ties. It’s like trying to get into a vault! My girls chose a new toy each this week and it nearly got broken as we tried to get into it – anyone would think it was worth a fortune! I do not understand why toys come with so much plastic packaging, it makes it frustrating and bad for the environment. Surely there must be a better way to package toys? I remember when I was a child that toys came with plastic ties but at least they were the ones that you could undo by hand and not requiring a toolbox to get into!
I have also found myself wondering why opening plastic bottles can be so hard. I have resorted to using towels to try and help open bottles and using knifes to try and cut open the caps. I am quite strong, so I wonder how people with muscle weakness, those who struggle to grip, or elderly people manage. I remember watching my Grandad struggle to take the plastic covers off the top of milk bottles (after managing to get the cap off), often the tab would come off and so he would end up having to use a knife to get into it. I am not sure what the answer is, but I definitely feel there is too much plastic on a lot of everyday products that we use and that a lot of it’s unnecessary and obviously not helping the environment.
I am sat here running through my head with all the everyday items that are in my house that comes in plastic packaging.
So far…. toothpaste, liquid soap, shampoo, conditioner, bubble bath, mouthwash, make up, medicines, lotions, washing up liquid, cleaning products, juice, most food, pet food, packaging for toys, DVDs, CDs etc.
It’s a good step forward that multipacks of tinned food such as tuna and beans no longer come in plastic packaging but there is a long way to go.
Hopefully more and more plastic packaging will either be removed or made to be recyclable.
I like the idea of going back to the 1940’s/50’s when people used to go to their corner shop and buy the food they needed for that day and it either did not come wrapped up, it was wrapped in paper or you had to take a container for the shop to fill with milk or oil etc. I know some shops are starting to pop up again like this.