"Just a thought...to save on plastic, why don’t Oral B sell refills, the container is still completely functional, I just need more floss!"
Jun 13 Sent
"Thanks for reaching out with your idea, Lucinda, and it’s one that we have thought about. It’s our responsibility as a manufacturer to make sure that no harmful substances can reach you via our products. The plastic container makes sure that the floss remains clean and hygienic, even after opening. We could not guarantee this if we sold the roll of floss without a container. Thank you for the suggestion, and know that we are always looking for ways to make our products more sustainable. For more info check out http://spr.ly/6014EUpfj ."
"The refill could be wrapped in a hygienic biodegradable wrapper- this isn’t really an inspiring response :-("
Jun 13 Sent
"We appreciate your honest feedback, and want to assure you it doesn't go unnoticed. Please know we'll be sharing all your valuable thoughts with our team!"
My fridge and bathroom cupboard were pretty bare yesterday because I have been procrastinating on going to the shops for the fear of bringing yet more unwanted plastic into my house. My main concern was that we have run out of shampoo and conditioner and that I was going to have to embark on re-fill products which are available from independent stores, none of the products I currently use though, because they are probably using palm oil or something equally unethical, so don't have to consider single-use plastic either. This means buying "Faith in Nature" or "Suma" or some other vegan, paraben-free products that I am blissfully ignorant about. The consequence of this is that it's expensive and whilst yesterday, I bought 400ml of shampoo and conditioner that was poured into my own bottles, it came at a premium of £4.50 a bottle, so to sustain this regular purchase I have one of two options: Hair-wash less frequently and wear a hat to hide greasy hair or have very short hair (and expense of keeping it short); both these options are feasible but I still have a teenage daughter at home with lovely, long hair who is not going to entertain either of them and those bottles are not going to last two weeks! So I can't see this being a financially viable shampoo-purchasing option; there has to be another alternative. I have downloaded the ingredients to make shampoo and conditioner about a month ago and it's still on my to-do list, if I can't buy the ingredients am I ever going to get around to making the stuff! Anyway, I had a really enjoyable time in the Sheaf Street Health Store in Daventry (I highly recommend), bought some healthy chocolate ;-) and had a long conversion with Shaun, who recommended I join Low Waste Living for Daventry and Towcester Area, a useful source of ideas for low-waste living, but all this, whilst enjoyable and a great way to meet people btw, is very time-consuming and I am concerned that I just cannot fit it all in with everything else in my life, and if I can't then nor will other people. So it must go back to manufacturers who are producing these single-use products to take responsibility.
TRESemme bottles won't even let you take the lid of their bottles, if you want to rinse it out and put it in the re-cylcing bin, you have to cut the top of the bottle off with a bread-knife and if you have ever done this, you will see there is still about a quarter of a bottle of shampoo left in there! The brand name TRESemme is apparently a play on words from the French très-aimé (well loved) and Edna L Emme a highly respected cosmetologist, so surely there's a great marketing campaign to be had here if they re-considered their plastic packaging. There are lots of people out their championing re-filling products, shampoo bars and washing your hair in bicarb and vinegar, so I don't need to re-write it all but lets be honest here, most of us are not going to have the time or the inclination to do this and even if we do, there will be times when we simply can't unless you live your life completely around saving the planet, which again for the majority of us is not going to happen - so the main manufacturers and super markets need to sort it out.......on my to do list, write to Unilever!
I ran out of time to buy food yesterday, except a couple of unwrapped courgettes from a Polish store, which I was offered a bag for! So back to Daventry market for Plastic-Free Friday!
Every day it is my mission to do four things to help combat the use of single-use plastic in my house and hopefully in the world:
1. Actively campaign about unnecessary plastic packaging to manufacturers and suppliers and the government.
2. Research and educate myself about re-cycling and alternatives to plastic packaging
3. Influence change, by sharing my views and any knowledge I have gained about what actually happens to our plastic re-cycling and what alternative solutions there are.
4. Try my utmost to do my household shopping without buying it in plastic!
This blog is my diary of this mission... Trying to get to the bottom of many issues such as; why does McDonald's need to wait to use all their existing plastic straws before using bio-degradable ones? And what about all the other single-use plastics like the McFlurry scoop and all those milkshake lids!
Also, according to Tesco's website, apparently you can re-cycle their organic salad bags at their stores where they have facilities to re-cycle their bags for life, so why not any of the other salad bags? And why stop at salad bags? Why not bread, rice, pasta, cereal and noodle bags? to name just a few of the many bags one's produce comes in and why only select some stores, why not just roll this out nationwide? These are the questions I hope to get answered, along with what plastic does actually get re-cycled, PET 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, PE and what do we do with black plastic? Why don't the government just ban it?
What do all those re-cycling symbols mean? How do you find out what is re-cycled locally? And how sustainable is re-cycling? Should we not be aiming at re-using and reducing the enormous amount of unnecessary plastic packaging produced instead?
In Tesco's defence, they do now sell some fruit and vegetables that are not wrapped in plastic, unlike Aldi, where everything is wrapped in plastic - this is good if people take their own containers or bags but more often than not, I see people buying these loose products and putting them in the plastic bags provided, which seems to defeat the object.
Fully recyclable salad bags Our organic bagged prepared salads are now made from Polyethylene (Polythene). PE film can be recycled into our 10p Bags for Life that are made from 94% recycled plastic. Recycled PE can also make long-life products such as park benches, bollards and waste bins. PE film is similar to the plastic found in carrier bags and can be recycled in the same way. We’ll encourage our customers to bring the PE film bags to our larger stores to be recycled. Customers can also take the salad bags to anywhere that collects plastic carrier bags.