Monday, 3 November 2008

Waste free week summary

It was all going so well until I was derailed by that damn duck yesterday.

Our Waste Free Week total is.... (drumroll)...

Everything Else: 308g (plus one large and two small plastic cups, a plastic fork and some disposable chopsticks while out and about - so call it 350g?)

The Duck: 675g (tray, film, giblets bag, carcass, skin, and a yoghurt pot full of fat) - that's nearly twice as much as the whole rest of the week! The whole duck when bought was 1.9kg + packaging so that's 33% unavoidable waste.

Overall total 1.025kg, but in a much smaller bag (left) than last week's 1.4kg (right). I've filled in my record sheet - have you?

Reflecting on the week, then... going waste free really does come down to planning and thinking things through. You have to be on the ball and taking waste seriously all of the time. One dodgy decision can put paid to a lot of previous careful behaviour!

Of course, you can't change 100% in a week. It takes time to work through what's already in the cupboards and to change ingrained habits. But the good effects of this week's shopping will carry forward, as there are fewer waste-heavy items in the fridge and cupboard waiting to be used up.

I still have to get myself sorted to take advantage of a few more waste-free tricks (yogurt maker, more tupperwares to take to the butcher, maybe a bokashi bin). And I think there are some things that cause waste I'll just have to accept for the moment - for example, boxed pasta is much more expensive than the stuff in a bag, and it is hard to get wholewheat pasta in either boxes or in bulk, but it is a real staple food for us. But the week has definitely opened my eyes to exactly what I would have to change and do without to be truly waste free. That's a big step at the moment, and I am not sure we are ready to go that far, but if even everyone just did "the easy stuff" that we've tried, think of the difference it would make!

Well done and thanks to all the waste free bloggers who've been writing and commenting this week - I hope there might still be at least the occasional post from all of us as waste free week recedes into history? A slim bin is for life, not just for a week in late October ;)


  1. HOORAH! Well done Katy. You reduced your waste and thats the important thing. We also had quite a challenge at the party didn't we?! I'm going to continue to post the occasional blog I think. I've felt very well supported this week by everyone too. Its been a really good week!

  2. Yay that's a great reduction and just look at those before and after photos. The best makeover ever. The great thing about a waste free challenge is that the week itself isn't the end but really the beginning of looking at rubbish in a different light. With council services improving all the time to create new solutions, bins will be easier to slim. A Bokashi bin is great. Even with my levels of abuse it all seems to work. I've even dared to put the bones of a roast chicken in this month. I can't wait to see how it comes out (however, I will no doubt have a moment of dread as we empty it into the compost bin). Good luck with keepin the waste down and hope to see some updates, popping up :-D

  3. Well done Katy, a great end to the week Congratulations!!

    Bokashis are awesome at swallowing up lots of food waste, so I would defo recommend one! My top tip for getting rid of fat is to roll some seeds in it and feed it to the birds on a bird table, it will keep them nice and warm as the weather starts getting colder!

    Anway well done for taking up the challenge and I hope that it's something that you will be able to continue with!!

    All the best, bin diver kate