Anyone here working toward zero waste?

Discussion in 'Family Life - Stories, Pictures & Updates' started by PolergirlOH, Mar 14, 2019.

  1. meglynnie

    meglynnie Songster

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    I would like too! I need to make this one of my goals, in the past I would start eliminating items but then slowly fall back into the convenience of single use plastics :oops: and it makes me feel ashamed. Currently our cabinet is full of plastic cutlery, plates, and cups. Life gets busy and its so tempting to use those to just grab and go and throw away. After this batch I'm going to start eliminating items, no need to put that much waste out when we have perfectly fine reusable dinner ware.
     
  2. igorsMistress

    igorsMistress Crossing the Road Barefoot

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    This is certainly a goal in my life.

    I use garment bags for my produce and soap nuts for some laundry.

    Haven't found a shampoo bar but thanks for the info about Lush! I did find one for the dogs though and we've used it for a few years.

    Our dog food comes in recycleable bags, plant based, and the company has a upc's for trees program.

    I have some garment bags that I use for produce and we use reusable bags for grocery shopping. We finally have a garden going and hope to expand it in the future.

    With just 2 of us sometimes I have to store bulk items in the freezer. That's where my greatest challenge lies. I don't have a ton of room or time for canning. My best option has been meal sized storage using my vacuum sealer.
     
  3. PolergirlOH

    PolergirlOH Chirping

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    @NewPoultryMom2019 you're welcome. :) Cooking is something I’ve always enjoyed. I came from a cooking family. But not everyone does. Simple is best to start!
     
  4. Stiletto

    Stiletto Songster

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    We're also working towards zero waste. :)

    I'd say one of our biggest triumphs has been changing the way we shop from supermarkets to health food stores; we now get one or two boxes of organic, local fruit and vegetables every week and have reduced the amount of plastic to zero for these items. This is basically our staple food, so that's quite significant! We've got used to eating what's available in season (as opposed to everything the whole year round) and now it's quite exciting when, say, asparagus becomes available! We're enjoying this aspect much more than we'd expected.

    We use a deodorant by Lush (that comes wrapped in paper) and I did look into their shampoos, but discovered that they contain sulphates (among other things I'd rather avoid) so I just use their deo and teeth tabs for travel.

    We acquire used disposable plastic containers from family members and reuse them until they die on us, then put them in the recycling bin. So this way we avoid buying new containers and extend the life of tubs that would be chucked after a single use. Wherever possible, we also buy in bulk, either loose (so we take our own containers) or packed in paper bags.

    Problem areas include dog, chicken and cat food, that come in large plastic bags, as well as drinking water - I'd love to get away from big plastic bottles.

    It's a journey that continues to be work in progress!
     
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  5. oldrooster

    oldrooster One Crazy Nut

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    I think there may be a thread or 3 on BYC, if not then other places on the web where there is directions to make large reusable bags with handles out of the plastic type feed bags. if it is a paper one it can be mulched.
     
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  6. Stiletto

    Stiletto Songster

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    I searched and found, thank you! There are some impressively well-made bags and aprons in some of those threads! Unfortunately, I have neither a sewing machine nor the sewing skills. It seems also that the bags (you get stateside) are a different type of plastic to the ones here. The chicken feed ones are a looser weave and I've learned that they disintegrate over time so I'm wary of using them for something mid-long term. The dog and cat ones are smooth plastic.

    I've been using them to store pine-cones, kindling, as lining under roosting bars and other places, an outdoor cushion cover/protector, to create shade in coop, as manure carriers, for rubbish and other bits and bobs - but nothing as charming as those sew items!

    I'm working my way through one of the threads and I love this idea:

    Definitely going to do this!

    Thanks again for pointing me in the direction of these threads!
     
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  7. oldrooster

    oldrooster One Crazy Nut

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    I'm sorry I didn't look where you were from.
     
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  8. Stiletto

    Stiletto Songster

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    Gosh, no need to apologise! I'm super grateful for your input!
     
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  9. Anaray

    Anaray Songster

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    I know I still have way too much waste, but one way I have found to 1. use up eggs 2. stock up on food supplies with excess eggs 3. less waste is that I bought a pasta maker.
    Reading about your mac n cheese, I thought I should mention it. That way you could dry your noodles and make it fresh when your kids want some. Of course it will never taste like the boxed stuff (whether thats good or bad is personal taste :D)
    The initial cost is high, but just yesterday I used the machine to make fresh linguine and use up a jar of pumpkin from last year. Took maybe 20mins from scratch for pumpkin alfredo.
     
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  10. Loopeend

    Loopeend Songster

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    I guess not 0 waste; but 85 procent less. Some medical stuff, toothpaste and shampoo's will be hard. Luckely we have this plastic recycling bin right next to the market I shop. Our goal is max one big bag per 6 months.

    For the rest it is quite easy. Markets are already cheaper here then supermarkets..and markets don't pack anything in plastic. So easy choice. I moved next to another supermarket then I used too. And this new supermarket drives me crazy. Every bellpepper is in his own plastic, not only wastefull but annoying because I easilly use 10 in a dish and I first have to unpack 10 bellpeppers...grrrr. cucumbers, chillies, apples, avocado's, banana's..they pack EVERYTHING in plastic. Very different then my previous supermarket. I also often end up with rotten products because you can't see the produce due to this packing in plastic. I try to come there as least as possible.

    We have thrown the modern coffee machine away with cups, and make coffee again like our parents did with a kettle, and a paper filter. Also again; cheaper! (And less noisy).

    The challenge (for my partner) is coca cola. But these bottles are luckely collected and you get 25 cents back.

    I'm happy with this. I think we are doing a good job; and it is easy because it also saves us some bucks. And I was allways (due because it is cheaper) someone that doesn't cook from packs anyway, allways fresh.

    For party's I sometimes buy plastic cups for soup, and plastic spoons, and plastic cups at the 2nd hand store. If all of our building plans are finished we have room for a cabinet for party glasses and porcelain soup-bowls and silverware. Right now we don't even have room for our own 2 plates heehee.

    I don't think I have many tips. I use all kinds of oils a lot for cooking. So I invested in some nice glass bottles. And found a store where you can buy a whole iron barrel of oil. And refill these bottles. Again also cheaper. And better then those lose small plastic oil bottles.

    I still could use some tips on paper though. Good boxes we keep for when we have to send something. Clean paper we shredd for starting our chimney-fire with. But what to do with the coloured, glossy paper?
     
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