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3 Zero Waste Issues that may surprise you - Tip No3 for a Waste Free 2019

  1. Chewing Gum
Did you know that chewing gum contains plastic?! I was rather shocked myself. Are you someone who likes gum? You may want to change this habit.

So traditionally chewing gum what made with chicle which is a natural gum that is made from tree sap. These days however most gum manufacturers have replaced chicle with polyethylene and polyvinyl acetate. Disgusting right?

Not only does this have some adverse health implication (I definitely don’t want to be chewing on plastic), especially when swallowed by accident ~ but it also comes with implications for our planet. One; the plastic needs to be produced which we all know by now comes with major environmental impact. Two; what happens to the gum once chewed up and chucked out?! As it’s neither biodegradable, nor recyclable it will end up in landfill or the ocean like any other single use plastic. Sadly we are all too familiar with this story already…

Cigarette buds are the most commonly littered item in Australia, but chewing gum is quick to follow and comes second in place together with drink bottles and paper.

Luckily there is a solution if you are a big gum lover! Switch to one of the natural gums that use the traditional gum ingredients. One great brand that has gone back to the good old fashioned recipe is Honest Gum; http://www.honestgum.com.au/

 Photo by Nik MacMillan on Unsplash

 

2. Tea Bags

Are you a tea lover? Do you long for that soothing cup of tea when you come back home from a long day? Let’s have a more in depth look at what that cup of tea really does to our planet.

Did you realise whilst you’re drinking your tea that most tea bags are made out of a plastic mesh?! Some are a combination of paper fibre and plastic, but hardly any are completely biodegradable. For years I had been throwing my teabags into the compost bin to only realise now that I have been so wrong all this time as plastic does definitely NOT belong in the compost.

So whilst we are ditching single use plastic the common tea bag is most definitely one we should get rid of. Don’t be alarmed though! We can still drink tea!

Thankfully there are some brands that are onto it and do use teabags which are biodegradable. T2 is one of them. And then of course there is always the traditional way; get a tea strainer or tea pot with an infuser and buy loose tea-leaves. Most true tea lovers will agree that this method results in the best tasting tea.

 

3. Paper Receipts

Do you take the receipts after each purchase? Where do these receipts end up?

This comes back again to a general misconception that paper isn’t that bad, after all, it’s recyclable, it doesn’t remain on our planet forever like plastic does. However, there is a dark side to single use paper which I go into in more detail in one of my previous blogs; https://mylastbag.com.au/blogs/news/the-no1-thing-you-need-to-improve-your-bulk-food-shopping-experience

Take note on your next shopping trip and ask yourself if you really need that receipt? When it comes to items that have a warranty on them ask the shop if they are able to email you the receipt rather than handing you a printed copy.

 These small steps help to make a big difference.

 

 


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