Strawberry punnets, take away coffee cups and take out containers, yoghurt tubs and water bottles. Somehow we managed to buy and store food perfectly well without plastic until the 1950's but ever since its become harder to buy food without plastic packaging than with. Almost everything is wrapped in a wrapper, placed in a bag or a plastic tub or a bottle.
17 million barrels of oil is used every year just to make the plastic bottles for for the bottled water consumption in the US.
In the US around 30% of municipal solid waste is from packaging and containers. The numbers are similar around the world.
100 billion plastic bags grocery bags are thrown away in the US per year.
Rotting food is the second largest genre of human made methane emissions.
Modern agriculture with it's tilling and pesticide use is depleting the ground of it's natural nutrients and it's ability to store carbon to the point that we now have a deficit of 139 million tonnes of carbon in our soils. We also have an excess of 109 million tonnes of carbon in the atmosphere contributing to global warming.
Changing your eating and food shopping habits can have a massive effect on your carbon footprint and your plastic waste. If you want to eat more sustainably cut down on packaging. Reach for the glass jar instead of the plastic one. Go to your local farmers market if you have one nearby or order a farm box or a box from Imperfect produce and help fight food waste. Choose organic when you can and cut down on meat and dairy. Go to the bulk section for staples if you have one.
BRING YOUR OWN DAMN BAGS! Please.
Bring bags for your produce and for your shopping. It's not that hard and if we all did it we could make sure those 100 billion plastic bags were never discarded.
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•Shop locally or at least regionally from local farmers markets or farm boxes
•Look for farms with organic or preferably regenerative farming methods
•Grow your own herbs, fruits, veg. Whatever you can fit in your garden, countertop or free space and can keep alive.
•Look for these labels when you shop: Fair Trade, Marine Stewardship Certified (MSC) Certified Organic, Certified Humane.
•Buy from bulk in your own jars when possible and choose products with the least packaging.
•Choose brands that come in glass jars and bottles instead of the brands with plastic versions.
•Eat a plant focused diet and if you do eat meat do your research on the farm it was raised, get to know your butcher.
•BRING YOUR OWN PRODUCE BAGS AND GROCERY BAGS
Local Farms and local Farmers Markets
Local farmers markets. The more local your food was grown the less carbon footprint it has. Find your market and get to know your growers. Choose organic over non-organic. And don't forget to bring your own bags!
Sun & Swell
Sun & Swell sells organic pantry staples in compostable plastic free packaging instead of plastic bags. Based in Santa Barbara they ship in compostable (and recyclable packaging). Their pantry staples bags do better in commercial composts and therefor they offer a send back program for all the bags. Save as you go and send back every few months. At checkout they offer a carbon offsetting calculated on your order. Find out more here. Oh, and don't miss out on their dried pineapple!
Tired of the plastic waste from your coffee pods? Wake up with Woken 100% compostable plastic free espresso pods. When the pod is used you can put the pod with your regular compost and it will be plant food within 90 days. Woken also sell ground coffee in compostable bags. Make your mornings planet friendly. Find out more here.
At the moment 40% of all food in the US goes uneaten. Food worth $218 BILLION gets thrown out every year and 21% of our water supply is used to produce this wasted food. Imperfect Produce's mission is to eliminate food waste and build a better food system for everyone. They do this by delivering perfect imperfect produce to your door, produce that would have ended up in landfill due to it's size, shape or color otherwise. Included in their imperfect produce is also food which there may have been a surplus of, or undervalued food like broccoli leaves (someone needs to get kale's PR agent for them). Sometimes there's food that has a packaging change and the old packaged food become obsolete overnight, or a short coded product (meaning the best by date is less than few months away). You still get to pick and choose the food you want before each order. You can read more about their mission here.
All the well known household brands in re-usable packaging. Häagen Dazs, Clorox, Pantene, Tropicana, Tide and so on. Instead of throwaway plastic packaging, Loop packages in reusable packaging that you pay a deposit for, which is refunded when you return it. Loop will clean and re-use. All products gets delivered in reusable totes and to return schedule a free pick up. You can learn more about it Here.
Zero Grocery is what all grocery delivery should be. Zero plastic packaging. It really shouldn't be that hard. Reusable or compostable packaging for all your basic needs. Zero doesn't deliver all over the US yet but they do deliver in LA and Bay Area at the moment. See if they deliver in your area here. If not, there are other companies like them all over the country. Google to find out oof there is anyone like them where you live. Chances are there is!