As a large family we get through a fair amount of food a week, We menu plan and shop with cost in mind until now.
A few weeks ago we would regularly shop in Aldi, the budget retailer meant we could easily feed our family for around £80 a week all in, including cleaning products etc. however as I become more conscious of how our food is packaged I have noticed that the budget retailers often do not use recyclable packaging, from bread to bathroom products the packaging is not recyclable.
I make a considerable effort to look at the produce on the shelves and in the freezers comparing costs but now also compare they type of packaging opting for glass over plastic bottles, tins & jars or tetra packs instead of plastics, it didn’t add a huge amount of cost to our weekly shop but we still throw an awful amount of single use plastic away, I mean why exactly does a cucumber or cabbage need to be wrapped in cling wrap or bagged? So the week before plastic free July was due to start I changed my weekly shop to Sainsbury’s where I have found generally far more plastic packaging is recyclable – hurray! yes it’s bumped the cost up a bit more (around £5 a week) but it’s worth it in my opinion BUT the same issues remain, fruit & veg is wrapped in plastic which is non recyclable so this week I’m off to put an order in with our local farm shop where you can request to have unwrapped produce and the price is more in line with the discounted supermarkets as you buy what you need, it’s seasonal & locally produced. win win in my opinion.
examples of recycling labels you can put in carrier bag recycling points:
I hope that I am managing to make others consider similar things and influence their choices when shopping, all it takes is a quick look to check if the packaging is recyclable or not, and then making a conscious choice as to which to buy.
In an ideal world pressure would be applied by the government to insist manufactures use more environmentally friendly packaging and to reassess what’s necessary and what is not.
For me, I’ll continue checking labels and making choices based on packaging and product suitability as well as keeping an eye on the cost.