Thursday, 21 February 2013

Week 1 - My plastic free lent

Wow - what a fantastic week! Firstly I want to thank everyone who has donated and shown their support.  £430 has been raised for the marine conservation society, keep it up everyone, every penny helps save our seas and fund important beach clean ups. 

Going plastic free has sparked lots of interest and got people thinking about where plastic waste ends up. Here are some reminders: 
  • 94% of seabirds in the North Sea are found to have ingested plastic;
  • Fish in the North Pacific Ocean could be ingesting plastic at a rate of roughly 12,000 to 24,000 tonnes per year; and
  • 100 million tonnes of rubbish is dumped into our oceans annually, 75% of this is plastic waste;
  • (Image source:

Living in Bristol has certainly helped me access non-plastic products (see earlier blog). However I'm keen to find out how easily you can live plastic free from the supermarkets, so over the next week I'll focus my efforts here.

Lunches have been the most difficult as you need to be prepared. Last week I forgot my lunch and had to eat lots of banana's, yesterday I didn't have time to heat up my soup so I ate only bread! Meat, salad, surface spray and paracetamol have proven to be tricky...any plastic free suggestions?

I've been surprised at the variety of non-plastic packaged items out there, you can easily reduce your plastic footprint by looking around and making a change. Here are some of the very easy replacements I've made;
  • Chocolate and sweet wrappers are found everywhere, try buying the larger bars wrapped in paper and foil;
  • Olives can easily be replaced by ones in a jar (I'm a big olive fan and found the jar selection to be very good and just as tasty!); 
  • Fresh soup - purchase Covent Garden in card containers rather than supermarket own brand soups;
  • Milk  - Getting a milk delivery is much more environmentally friendly as bottles are  used up to 20 times before being recycled. Having it delivered to your door is super convenient. Check the milk and more website to see if a milkman can deliver to you:; and
  • Shower gel - just use soap! 
Keep your thoughts, suggestions and donations coming folks....

Plastic out.


    1. Hi Emily
      I've just read about your Lent challenge in our our local newspaper and have popped over to read about your progress so far and wish you luck in the coming weeks.
      I attempted a similar challenge for Zero Waste Week in September 2008. I kept it up for a month and, like you, I blogged about it at I didn't manage to live completely plastic free but it did help me consider the amount I was buying and how I might attempt to reduce it. I'd like to think it has had a lasting effect on my lifestyle, but I am conscious of having lapsed a bit since. I'm hoping your example will strengthen my resolve.
      Shopping in local independent shops makes all the difference. Southville Deli allows us to buy loose goods and refill our cleaning products. The local butcher and greengrocer will let us use our own containers/carriers (when we remember to bring them!). Onya sell a very useful pouch of 5 mesh bags for buying and storing fruit and vegetables.
      I buy Lush solid shampoo and deodorant. There are a number of recipes for making your own toothpaste but I have never tried any of them so cannot comment on their effectiveness.
      Planning is crucial and failure to do so frequently trips me up.
      Anyway, I wish you you well and look forward to following your progress.

    2. I'am glad to read the whole content of this topic and am very excited.Thank you.