Collective cries of despair rang out across Aotearoa in December last year as diligent recyclers heard the news that NZ's Soft Plastic Recycling Scheme was being abruptly brought to a halt. The Packaging Forum (who ran the scheme) announced that "changes to global recycling have meant that we're now collecting more than we can currently process in New Zealand".
An interesting dichotomy that I face with running my business is this: I sell products...and yet, I am opposed to consumerism. To be honest, it's a pretty weird situation that I find myself in. And it's something that's in the back of my mind, especially as we get closer to the silly season.
Plastic bags are slowly being phased out around Aotearoa (a little too slowly, if you ask me, but we'll be grateful for small wins). This comes as we realise what an environmental hazard they are and it dawns on us just how far behind the rest of the world we are on the issue of reducing disposable plastics. And, as these initiatives roll out, I've noticed more than a few panicked cries of "but, how will I line my rubbish bin?!" and "what am I supposed to do with dog poo?!"
With Plastic Free July less than a week away, people all around the world are preparing to kick disposable plastics to the curb. If you're new to zero waste, you might like to start with something simple like refusing plastic straws, cups, bags and coffee cups...or, if this isn't your first Plastic Free July, maybe you'll be avoiding single-use plastic packaging...or going the whole hog with no plastic whatsoever!