Just One Thing: Less Packaging

15 05 2008

This idea often aligns with the Less Plastic tip, but I believe it’s important–and powerful–enough to mention on its own. The best way to avoid individually-packaged foods is to buy in bulk. This does not necessarily mean buying extremely large quantities; even buying a “family” size reduces package waste when compared to using several smaller sizes, and the former is often, as many people know, the cheaper route. I live in an apartment in which we cannot store bulk anything, but think twice when buying the individual yogurt cups, and you’re on your way.

Keep this one thing in mind: according to the American Museum of Natural History’s Center for Biodiversity and Conservation, nearly 50% of human waste production by volume can be attributed to packaging alone.  Yikes. Resist the individually-wrapped prunes and chicken cutlets, my friends; it’s just not worth it. Besides, then you have to exhaust yourself opening that little plastic wrapper, and we all know how much fun THAT is.

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4 responses

16 05 2008
Mister Moone

Colleen,

Certainly so – reducing packaing is a good thing to do – I am also put in mind of the act of “mindful Eating” that has been promoted by people from the Buddhist and Yogic traditions; a more accessible form of this, for most of us, was promoted in ther book, “Diet for a Small Planet,” by Frances Moore Lappé [this excerpt is from Wikipedia] – this book presents her theory of “Complementary Protein” sources in the human diet. As the eight essential amino acids making up the “complete proteins” found in meat are each present to various extents in a range of plant sources, the theory maintained that eating plant foods in “complementary” combinations combine proteins would be equivalent to those found in meat, to meet human nutritional requirements.

The bestselling first edition, published in 1971 by Ballantine, was sponsored by the Friends of the Earth organization. Besides the book’s promotion of vegetarianism, its underlying orientation emphasized a responsible use of the Earth’s resources…Lappé also brings to light the fact that to produce 1 lb. of protein in the form of beef or veal, we must feed 21 lbs. of protein to the animal. Other forms of livestock are slightly less inefficient, but the average ratio in the U.S. is still 1:8. It has been estimated that the amount of protein lost to humans in this way is equivalent to 90% of the annual world protein deficit.

~ “Food” for thought!
🙂
Wayne Schmoyer

16 05 2008
Mike

So true!
Packaging waste is a disgrace.

Mike

25 06 2008
Regis and Kelly Go Green « The Greening Tree

[…] discussed here for saving money while going green: cutting down on junk mail to reduce spending; buying in bulk at the grocery store; and using clean greening products (bought or made). Other great ideas include […]

3 01 2015
Geralynn

Hey, that post leaves me feeling fohoisl. Kudos to you!

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