Before this, I’d read and thought a bit about sustainable packaging and products. The distinction between products that have a real environmental impact as apposed to those that we are merely told have an impact. Response to a Wash of Green – Core77
All that certainly got me thinking. But it wasn’t until I actually tried actively to cut out excessive packaging in the day to day. I found that our society, for better and for worse, is really not structured in a way where you can reject much packaging. I tried making coffee at home, and when I had to getting coffee out, not getting take away. I tried eating at home. Rejecting rejecting. But I found that there is a level of packaging forced upon consumers that made this experience very difficult, more so than it should have been. Whenever we consume it comes with mandatory packaging whether it is handed straight to us or disposed prior.
I found this book in the book store the other day: Why Shrink-wrap a Cucumber? (and then later a good review on core77). The book brought to my attention the kinds of packaging that are necessary, or even beneficial. Ones that help preserve, protect, and so on, where the purpose they serve outweighs the waste or energy that the packaging itself take to recycle.
I’ve been purchasing a lot of things from the internet, and found that this was a very packaging rich experience. Boxes are triple-bubble-wrapped and put in another box then sticky-tape-coated. When you finally get to the product its engulfed n polystyrene. We can definitely do better.
Another thing I found was a recent talk in Melbourne by Joost Bakker where he explains how, in his cafe he was able to reduce his waste phenomenally. I definitely think these types of zero waste policies should be more wide spread.
I feel I was quite unsuccessful in reducing my packaging consumption. But I do think that I’m more conscious of what I’m consuming, its relevance, and whether or not its required.