Bottles be gone! Reduce, Reuse, Refill!
It just makes logical sense. What easier way could there be to avoid waste than to use containers multiple times? Cleaning supplies and beverage mix concentrates are now available in packaging made for refilling used receptacles, so what took me so long to get into this?
Yes, it’s true that I’ve been on my own little green journey lately. I’ve been taking it one step at time, and now that I have the greenest office on the block, it’s high time for my next big move. Inspired by this story in the New York Times, I’ve started to focus on shrinking my family’s carbon footprint in the kitchen.
We’ve recently started using concentrated refills and refillable bottles whenever possible. The New York Times reports that companies have begun to offer them for everything from cleaning materials to juice drinks, and that currently, Britain seems to be leading the United States on introducing this idea to consumers.
In my house, we’ve completely stopped purchasing bottled beverages. Iced tea is now always homemade, as is lemonade (using lemons from my lemon tree). We also recently purchased a home soda maker, which has not only majorly upped our water intake (we’re in the midst of a love affair with seltzer, or as my daughter calls it, “bubble juice”) but has inspired me to try my hand at some soda alchemy. Albeit with limited success. My first attempt Ginger Ale was a failure of epic proportions, but I haven’t given up.
So what are the advantages of these refills?
For starters, refills create less trash from packaging. They also reuse materials (usually plastic or glass) that already exist. Because concentrated refills are smaller than full-size products, there are fewer emissions in order to transport them to where you are, and the materials for refillable bottles can be moved in bulk packaging. As prices for transport and materials go up—and as consumers begin to incorporate more green ideas into their lives—you can expect to see more refillable options in stores.
But here at Abe’s Market, the future is now! Environmental consciousness is always on our minds, and some of our sellers are already offering reusable bottles and kits.
Green Irene‘s cleaning kits are made from environmentally safe cleaning materials. Mix up powdered, plant-based enzyme concentrates and reuse the plastic spray bottles.
Dsolv offers ingenious compost-able bags to use for yard waste. The starter kit gets you going, and then minimally packaged refills help you clean up your leaf litter and grass clippings all through yard work season.
Eco Cleaners has a huge range of safe and effective cleaners. Whether you need dish soap, bathroom cleaner, glass cleaner or an all-around spray cleanser, purchase a small bottle together with a gallon-sized refill.
Tiesta Teas knows that even a small change can make a big impact. They sell refills of their loose teas, expecting that their customers will reuse the original tins. A lighter product means less fuel consumed to bring it to you, and there is less packaging to throw away.
What steps will you take to green your life? Will you bring your favorite products along for the ride?