I just finished reading the book Zero Waste Home by Bea Johnson and thought it was pretty amazing. And very challenging. Living in a regional town and trying to reduce your waste should be easier in some ways than in a big city. Surely there is more access to local farmers and local produce. However, I find that I have to refuse plastic bags more at the local Farmer’s markets than when I shop at Coles. When I shop at a bigger supermarket, I can bring my own bag, use the self check-outs (to be fair, I think that supporting a human check out assistant is better but I usually find that they don’t fill up my reusable bags properly and I end up coming home with a plastic bag) and say no to a docket/receipt. When I go to the Farmer’s markets, I seem to be constantly refusing plastic bags. To be fair, the bags are usually from Coles so at least there is a second use for the life of the plastic bag (from a 12 min average use to a 24 min average use!!). I find the ‘Refuse’ part of the 5 ‘Rs’ quite challenging and I feel like i will be doing it a lot at the beginning of my plastic-free journey. I am doing all these little mini challenges in the lead-up to Plastic Free July.
Anyway I was really excited to visit IAM Bulk in Mackay yesterday. I didn’t think we had any Bulk Food stores. I’d actually been told about it, but it is in a slightly obscure location (the shopfront of ‘Bottoms Up Colonics’) and so I wasn’t really sure what to expect. I got some chia seeds (which I then turned into Chia Pudding, YUM) kidney beans and sunflower seeds. And no plastic bags! Also, it’s good that you can choose the amounts that you want, to prevent waste. On that note, I’ve got almost a kilo of Millet from a previous shopping outing at a non bulk foods shop and I have no idea what to do with it. I made it into some 3 grain porridge for my daughter but I/she didn’t like the texture – it was a bit gritty. Might have to make some Millet Flour bread or something. Any suggestions would be greatly welcomed. I’ve also added it to Bea Johnson’s BULK App which locates bulk food stores all around the world. And speaking of which, they need a bit of help at the moment. You can help Save the BULK App here.