It’s that time of the year for personal resolutions. What better occasion to kick off a new year and a new decade with the intention to practice a more waste-free lifestyle? Our environmental health is being pushed to its limits and even the smallest, simplest changes in daily routine can be a step in the right direction.
Here are a few tips (or reminders) to help you along the way.
1. Buy Local, Buy Bulk
Shopping at farmers’ markets and local businesses goes a long way to support your community and the environment. Buying local cuts down on large carbon footprints that come from long travel and shipping times.
Buying in bulk is a great way to reduce excess packaging found in single-serve items. For groceries, opt for unpackaged, fresh food instead of items packed in plastic. When possible, buy large quantities of staple necessities for the home to cut down on return trips and constant refills. Frozen food is a great way to accomplish this, and with Cadence Kitchen, you can purchase your frozen food in bulk to ensure you always have wholesome, delicious meals on-hand and ready to heat at a moment’s notice.
Take a lesson from the restaurant industry by practicing FIFO (first in, first out). When unpacking your groceries to store in the fridge, freezer or pantry, bring older foods to the front, and place the new ones behind. This helps you get to the older foodstuffs before expiring and is also a great way to prevent shelf clutter over time.
3. Make a Meal Plan
Planning for your week’s meals may seem like a huge commitment, but it’s a great way to cut down on food waste by buying only what you need. It’ll also save you time by wandering aimlessly through the supermarket aisles on an empty stomach.
4. Compost & Recycle
It may seem daunting at first, but try giving composting a shot. Use food scraps, yard trimmings, and other organic waste to create a compost pile. Countertop composting bins are easy to find and don’t take up a lot of room. What can’t be composted, should be recycled if possible. Donate old clothes and other out of use items. Curious about composting? Here’s a great place to learn more.
Use home products that are compostable. Bamboo toothbrushes and compostable plates and flatware for parties are a great start. If it’s a “take out” kind of night, consider supporting businesses that use composting takeout containers. Do your research to find out what other businesses are creating environmentally friendly products and services and support their work.
5. Cloth over Paper
Invest in cloth napkins for meals and work towels for cleaning. It’s an incredibly simple way to take heavily used paper products out of the equation.
6. On the Go
Avoid buying plastic water bottles and opt for a glass or metal one instead. A travel mug for coffee or tea is a great way to avoid paper to-go cups at coffee shops. A metal or glass straw is a great addition as well.
Practice makes perfect
These are just a few ways that you can be on your path to living a waste-free 2020. Feeling overwhelmed? Start with one or two and know that even the smallest steps forward make a difference. As we move into the new year, take a moment to ask yourself why living a waste-free lifestyle is important for you? Whether it is finances, environmental responsibility, showing an example for your family, or something else entirely, it’s good to have a why, to return to along your journey. It’s going to take time and commitment, but we have your back!
Let us know how you’re planning to live a waste-free 2020 in the comments! We’d love to hear from you.
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