It’s staggering to think that in the last half of the 20th century more than one billion tonnes of plastic has been produced. Every piece of this plastic remains somewhere in the earth today. Plastic has become a major threat to the health of our planet, particularly in or our marine environment, where huge amounts of our plastic waste ends up.
The Plastic Free July Campaign aims to get people thinking about single-use disposable plastic and take the challenge to eliminate it from their lives.
During July, we encourage all shoppers at the market to bring their own carry bags, produce bags, bottles and jars to support this campaign.
Market stallholders that offer refills for customers who bring their own containers or bottles include Grumpy Grandma Olives (olive oil) and Nudgel Nuts (macadamia oil).
At Jungle Juice, customers can buy their own reusable bamboo drinking straws and glass juice bottles. Customers who bring their bottle back for a refill will receive a discount.
The market also offers reusable hessian tote bags, which are available for $6 at selected market stalls and at the manager’s tent.
Here at the market we have some great initiatives in place to reduce plastic, such as
• Reusable coffee mugs and a mug wash station which saves hundreds of disposable coffee cups each week.
• Reusable cutlery and reusable or biodegradable crockery at breakfast stalls
• The use of compostable cups at drink stalls
• Stainless steel bowls to weigh produce rather than plastic bags, which can then be used to tip straight into your cloth carry bags.
The one place plastic still seems to sneak in is produce bags that are used to weigh and store small items like loose salad greens and beans. Our stallholders will be offering paper bags or compostable bags during July, however we encourage customers to bring their own bags for these items (there are mesh-style bags available online or you can reuse you old plastic produce bags).
We’ve also recently published a handy guide on our website called How to Store Produce Without Plastic Bags, which gives some great tips on maximising the life of fresh produce without using plastic bags.