Plastic bagless shopping trip failed

I had to run to the grocery store last night to pick-up a few things.  I made a list of the things I would need over the next few days so as not to over purchase. I brought my reusable shopping bags to avoid the whole extra plastic bag thing.  That part worked out great!  I only got what I needed and everything I bought fit into one bag.

Another awesome thing was that I bought coffee! That was the main reason I went to this store: to buy coffee.  They have bins upon bins of bulk coffee. I selected a nice certified-fair trade organic blend and had them grind it for me.  They put it in a paper bag that I can bring back next time.

I also selected a nice hunk of cheese that was cut at the store and wrapped in minimal plastic.  Not perfect, but better than the alternative. The thing that really tripped me up was the meat and the produce department.  I thought I’d get some meat from the butcher to avoid packaging.  As expected they wrapped up my selection in some paper wrapping, but then they wrapped it again in plastic (saran wrap type plastic). I made a mental note to ask for no plastic next time.

In the produce department I started out good.  A couple of apples rolling around loose in the cart.  A few zucchini joined the mix.  But then I got to the brussel sprouts.  A good bin slimmer would have just gone with some other vegetable, but I did not.  I shamefully took a produce bag and piled in a few handfuls of the little green things.   I felt a little better knowing that I can recycle that bag, but not much.

The Rubbish Diet creator, Karen Cannard, has some good tips on how to think about your waste while shopping.  I may not have had the most successful venture this time out, but I definitely was thinking about packaging the entire time.


About Amy Marpman

Director of Recycling Services at Great Forest, Inc. in NYC. Continually finding the balance of idealism with the practical realities that make or break recycling programs.
This entry was posted in The Rubbish Diet and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Plastic bagless shopping trip failed

  1. It’s a right pain when they automatically add the plastic wrap! Good luck in stopping them next time. Love that bag by the way 🙂

  2. Pingback: The Rubbish Diet Weigh In – Week 3 | Beyond the Blue Bin

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