To preserve our planet, adopting anti-gasping reflexes is within everyone’s reach. Because all gestures matter, even small ones, why not start in the kitchen, where removing plastics, packaging and overconsumption of food is gradually becoming a new way of life?
Albert Einstein asked us, “The world will not be destroyed by those who do evil, but by those who look at it and do nothing.” It’s time to say, “I’m doing myself well while doing good to the planet.” And for this, small and large gestures are indispensable, even interdependent. Gradually changing one’s consumption habits, adopting new reflexes is the first step that more and more of us are taking.
Starting with the reduction in the volume of our waste: 4 out of 10 consumers say they buy bulk products regularly or occasionally. However, this first step alone is insufficient. To say goodbye to unnecessary packaging and plastic and food waste, here are some easy tips for implementing at home, especially in the kitchen.
Do you know the 5 R rule?
There are “gurus” for everything, in storage method (Marie Kondo), in lifestyle (Jane Fonda), in healthy and conscious eating (Carlo Petrini)… Zero waste has its own with its rule of 5 R to minimize the impact of our waste.
- Refuse all single-use products and focus on bulk. Never buy a product that will end up in the trash. So I preserve the planet and my health.
- Reducing the consumption of goods. Before any act of purchase, ask the question: “Do I really need it”?
- Reuse everything that can be reused by repairing, for example, its appliance (Envy, Repair café…), and by favouring short and second-hand circuits.
- Recycling anything you can’t reuser (after failing in a repair attempt, for example).
- Return to the earth by composting all organic waste.
Empty your closets before filling them smartly
If zero waste is your new philosophy of life, don’t make a vertical ranking to make room! Start by emptying cupboards and refrigerator, then sort everything you found there.
Your starches, coffee, tea, sugar into airtight jars indicate the date with an erasable
felt. Store them again by highlighting what you need to consume quickly, and finish using what you have before you replenish. Choose bulk shopping by using mini cloth bags to avoid plastic containers, for example, and use a reusable shopping cart or shopping bags.
Replace your water packs with tap water (filtered or
not). For this, choose glass bottles, carafes and other gourds. If you have too many fruits and vegetables, cook them and freeze them.
All you have to do is take them out as soon as you need them. This is called “batch cooking”: you prepare your meals in advance and take them out to warm them up. Cook only what you need.
Take the amount you need as close as possible. For example, you need about 3 tablespoons full of lentils, half a glass for rice, a glass for pasta, or 5 small potatoes per person for an adult.
Sort, delete, replace
88% of Indian people say they know about actions to reduce the amount of household waste (source Ademe 2019). According to Ademe, the Indian say that they also prefer to buy less packaged, i.e. in bulk, as soon as possible, promote compost and above all not to waste. A good start, knowing that the National Compact to Combat Food Waste aims to reduce excesses across the entire food chain by 50% by 2025.
To get started, it’s easy. Start by sorting plastic bottles, disposable dishes, food films and aluminium foil. Remove the packaging cartons and replace them with suitable containers such as glass jars. There are more practical and hygienic alternatives to replace them, such as beeswax packaging, for aluminium foil or food films.
Plastic dishes are replaced by porcelain, earthenware that you will find cheaply in recycling shops or resale shops like Emmaus.
Reducing food waste
Limiting food waste and, at the same time, reducing waste also requires a few simple steps to adopt. Starting with cooking your leftovers, so you don’t throw them away, for example. There are many anti-waste recipes that you will find in books, on blogs or on the Ademe website to inspire you. Another possibility is composting, or the art of naturally processing biodegradable waste.
Depending on your home’s size, you can either use a small bin provided by the town hall (some municipalities provide it for free, find out) or buy one in a garden centre. If you are lucky enough to have an exterior, the format may be larger. It’s a gesture that’s accessible to all wallets.
Try to it yourself
To limit its packaging and plastic consumption, making certain products, such as household products, is another option. The Internet is full of “Do It Yourself” tutorials for the home.
It would help if you mainly had baking soda, vinegar, Marseille soap and essential oils.
These products will serve you as well for the dishes to give a clean shot to your kitchen, the interiors of the cupboards, the refrigerator, and the sink … To go a step further, avoid disposable sponges and prefer those that are washable and reusable.
If you like Japanese products, make a “Hawaii”. It’s an alternative to sponges. It is made from scraps of fabric of old clothes braided together. We wash and reuse endlessly.
Paper towels and paper towels also clutter our worktops and garbage cans.
Go back to the days of cloth towels at the table. They are more aesthetically pleasing, washed and used for years.
Also, recycle your old fabrics, such as sheets, to give them a second
life. Shop with tote-bags or make them yourself. And do the same to pack your gifts or takeaways. The Japanese use “furoshiki”, a square of fabric that is used to transport business. As they say, to try it is to adopt it.