One of the key objectives for many zero-waste advocates in developing a more sustainable lifestyle is eliminating or properly recycling plastics. But given that everything we consume, including the meals we eat and the goods we purchase, is wrapped in plastic twice, this is no simple undertaking! In 2015, it was predicted that over 320 million tonnes of polymers, excluding textile fibres, were produced; as a result, customers had little choice but to “buy in” to the use of plastic. Even if it could be simpler to fully ignore the packaging industry, which accounts for the vast majority of the products that include plastic, education and awareness raising are the initial steps in reducing plastic usage. There are still plenty of polymers available that can be found by buying in bulk or via zero-waste retailers. So let’s have a look – zero e-waste Singapore, at the hidden plastic-containing products and how you can avoid them by using zero-waste substitutes.
- Tea Bags & Coffee Filters: Although many teabag makers have switched to cardboard packaging (even if it is once again coated in plastic), the concealed component is really found in the teabags themselves. The bags are frequently heat-sealed with polypropylene, making them resistant to composting and eventually degrading into microplastics. Expect your teabag to be an environmentally unfriendly product for the time being even though manufacturers are attempting to lower the proportion of plastic in their products. The same issues frequently arise with coffee filters because they are made of cellulose-based filter paper and are adhered together with polypropylene.
Zero-Waste Alternative to Tea Bags: The zero-waste method involves buying loose leaf tea in bulk and using a vintage tea strainer or more contemporary tea infuser. Alternatively, keep a watch on the packaging of your favorite companies to find out when they finally make the move to naturally degradable bags. Reusable coffee filters without plastic are available for coffee, which not only eliminate plastic but also all of the other trash produced by single-use filters that accumulates over time. Users even claimed that the brew tasted better thanks to the product’s usage of 100% organic cotton!
- Chewing Gum: Well, chewing gum tends to feel like plastic after a while, so it’s probably not shocking that it actually contains the substance. Manufacturers of chewing gum are notoriously discreet about the chemicals in their products, classifying them as “gum-based,” but study has shown that some gums contain polyethylene and polyisobutylene, a plastic used in tyre innertubes.
Zero-Waste Alternative to Chewing Gum: There aren’t many chewing gum substitutes that produce zero trash. Although there are currently a few plastic-free gum options available, earlier civilizations tended to rely on naturally occurring chewing sticks for oral hygiene. One choice is the Scandinavian True Gum, while local Glee gum offers a tonne of fantastic flavor.
- Drinks & Food Cans: Although we are already aware of the advantages of recycling aluminium over plastic, the sad reality is that both beverage and food cans frequently have a plastic liner that makes recycling more challenging and, of course, cannot be recycled in and of itself. The most common type of plastic is epoxy bisphenol-A, also known as BPA, which has lately been connected to a number of health problems when it comes into contact with food or beverages.
Zero-Waste Alternative to Drinks & Food Cans: This is a challenging one. The best option is to purchase fresh vegetables whenever feasible and dry meals using a reusable container that can be rehydrated in bulk. Although even the lids are lined with low density polyethylene, glass bottles are probably your best bet for avoiding most plastics when it comes to soda (LDPE).
- Toothpaste: You already know that toothpaste packaging is hazardous because it often contains several polymers and even metal, unless you’ve already moved to chewing sticks. But toothpaste itself frequently also includes. Some nations, like the US with the Microbead-Free Waters Act of 2015, have outlawed the use of microbeads in all cosmetic products.
Zero-Waste Alternatives to Toothpaste: Toothpaste pills are a wonderful choice if you wish to completely eliminate plastics in all forms, including the packaging and the ingredients in your toothpaste. The idea is to refill your container using refill packs that also offer less waste. These refill packs typically feature sustainable and reusable packaging in card, glass, or metal.
Hope the above information in – zero e-waste Singapore was helpful.