Plastic free shopping
Human beings have created an incredible 8.3 billion metric tons of plastics since the 1950s. Of that, a terrifying 79% has ended up in landfills or the natural environment, including our oceans. With just 9% being recycled.*
As plastic leaks into our oceans, marine life are getting caught up and choked on bits of plastic, large and small. Plastic is so prevalent in our magnificent oceans that 1 in 3 turtles have now eaten plastic. As plastic enters every level of the ocean food chain, from zooplankton up to big fish and whales, it’s even travelling back to our plates in seafood.*
Around half of the plastic produced since the 1950s is of the single-use variety. Things like plastic cutlery, straws and bags are sometimes only used for a few minutes before being discarded into our environment where they will hang around for generations, if not forever! It's clear that we need to find better solutions for our single-use items.
One simple way to reduce your consumption of plastic bags is to use reusable produce bags when you do your grocery shopping. You can buy them. Or, you can make your own. I picked up a net curtain from the second hand store and used that.
Crafty Patti gives a brilliant step-by-step in this video so I won't recreate the wheel. The particular fabric that I used wasn't stretchy so it worked better with a simple running stitch than with the zig zag stitch that Patty used. But otherwise, I followed Patti's instructions to the letter and they worked really well. (She has a lot of other clever ideas on her youtube channel too so watch out for more inspired creations from me!)
If you want your own reusable produce bags but don't think you can make them yourself, you can buy them. Try online stores like KeepJar or bulk food stores like GRAM in Malmö. Or you can ask me nicely and I can run a couple up for you. But, if you have a sewing machine, or can borrow one, give it a try yourself. It was a lot easier than I thought!
PS I am not sponsored by KeepJar or GRAM, I just like their work :-)
*Statistics and information from Greenpeace UK Ltd.