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Approach your local grocery store to help reduce plastic consumption.

reducing plastic consumptionWe got an email from Blue from Organic Art, one of our readers, who made these efforts to reduce her household plastic consumption. She approached her local Pick and Pay manager and this is what happened:

I had a very encouraging experience last Thursday that has left me inclined to write about it…which is unusual for me!

I have been feeling increasingly alarmed at the amount of plastic that passes through even a small household like ours and have been trying to think of ways to decrease our consumption.

Caledon, our nearest shopping center has recently become home to a fabulous new Pick ‘n Pay. With little or almost no expectation I approached their manager, Paul Hutton. I explained my plastic issue and asked if it was at all possible for me to process my fruit and vegetables in a way that minimised my plastic consumption. I suggested I bring my own re-usable bags and a separate piece of paper (from my recycle bin) that would hold all the individual bar code stickers. To my absolute surprise Paul didn’t even hesitate!! He immediately took me over to his fruit and veg manager, explained what I needed and that I would be there every Thursday.

I was so swept up in Paul’s enthusiasm that I thought it an opportune time to ask for more, sushi, chicken necks for the dogs etc. Things I buy every week. Paul listened thoughtfully then said “Sure, that shouldn’t be a problem”.  He was just the best!

A few minutes into my shop he appeared to say that he had spoken to the managers of the butchery, bakery and cheese sections and the sushi guys. They had all been told to expect me and my unusual requests. The only thing that he expected of me was to be patient with his staff, this obviously being an out of the ordinary situation for them.

And so I bought all my weighable fruit and veg without using a single plastic bag! Sushi, necks, cheese, bread etc. will try this week using containers brought from home.

An abundant and appreciative thanks to Paul Hutton, Manager of the new Caledon Pick ‘n Pay for doing his bit for our environment and for acknowledging my individual need and Congratulations to Pick ‘n Pay for selecting Paul for the position of manager!

This is so encouraging. Well done to Pick ‘n Pay and well done to Blue for thinking about how she can do things differently and decrease how much plastic she uses in her daily life. Its also an example of how it can actually be quite simple to make changes like this and if more people start going to Pick n Pay with their reusable bags and containers then it won’t be something out the norm for the staff anymore. One can see the beginnings of a knock on affect here… Small changes can make a real difference to overall plastic consumption.


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