Plastic Free July 2019

Plastic Free July is nearly here again. Last year Harvest Launceston Community Farmers’ Market undertook the challenge to reduce plastic use. It as was a great conversation starter, idea generator and many stallholders got involved. This involvement has led to sustained changes.

Some previous Plastic Free July actions have included Erinvale Farm undertaking the standout action to package their delicious and diverse varieties of potatoes in paper bags.  This action has been sustained. Lentara Grove let customers bring their own bottles to fill with their quality olive oil. Another action that has been sustained.

Globally the issue of plastics – especially single use plastic waste – has only continued to get bigger. More studies are reporting on plastics polluting our waterways, oceans, and ecosystems, in addition to a ‘crisis’ in the recycling industry. Hence, the issues associated with plastics is not going away anytime soon.

Planning what you can do is a great way to kick off Plastic Free July. When considering ways you can reduce your plastic use it is useful to remember that just like a New Years’ resolution it is easy to talk about than make changes. Reducing personal use of plastics is no easy feat. Plastics are a part of nearly every facet of our lives.

If you are keen to make a difference at Harvest Market there are already some fantastic plastic-free options available. There is Erinvale Farm Potatoes and Lentara Grove as mentioned above. There is also Elgaar Dairy selling their cheeses in paper and providing re-useable glass milk bottles. The Grain Family sell their grains, cereals and legumes in bags made of paper and corn starch. The Wooded Ladle invites you to use your own cup for their winter warming soups. Even at the Harvest Information Stall you can purchase two sizes of keep-cups as well re-useable hessian bags with a useful pocket in the front.

The trick to reducing plastic use is to remember to use your keep cup, re-useable bottles, bags, etc. each time. A key to remembering and sustained behaviour change is to create an environment that makes the change you want the easy option. An enabling environment to reduce plastic use is as simple as having your re-useable bag located near the front door, in a bag or the car boot ready to use. If you purchase a coffee each day, make sure you leave your keep-cup near your keys and have a bag that the keep-cup easily slips into.

It is going to take more than individual actions to reduce the impacts of plastic use. You can check out just some of the other actions at the Plastic Free July Website.

Harvest Market will be hosting Plastic Free Launceston, a not-for-profit organisation working to reduce single-use plastic in everyday life, throughout the month of July. They will be holding a series of demonstrations each week promoting plastic free tips and tricks. Why not come and learn how to make bees’ wax wraps?! Stay tuned for more details coming soon…