Wednesday, 26 October 2011

Green Ideas to cut down on packaging & save money

Now that the carbon tax bill has passed many people are worried about how this will affect them and their families.  There has been concern about rising amenity costs, groceries, fuel and other every day necessities. 

People have given examples of how they think these costs will occur: for example the cost of manufacturing plastic bags to hold dried fruits, nuts, lollies etc. will cost the manufacture more to produce due to the carbon tax.  To cover losses the manufacturer will then raise the price of the plastic bags they make, the buyer will then up the price of their end product and once this product hits the supermarket shelves it will cost more than it use to.

The main point behind carbon tax is to try and stop consumers from over spending / companies from overproducing.  We are at a crucial moment in our history were if we want it we go out and get it , with many people not even considering their global footprint.  There are things we can do ourselves to make the situation a little bit easier on the hip pocket, though not all these ideas will be options for everyone.  Some of them may help.  

The main ideas are cutting down on packaging and ways to cut spending.

1.      Grow your own herbs, such as fennel, oregano, curry, thyme, rosemary, lavender, bay leaf, lemon grass, chili – this saves on packaging and the cost of buying fresh herbs from the shop.

2.     Dry your herbs out so you can use them out of season.

3.     Make your own herb blends with your dried herbs for sauces and seasoning.  Give any over abundance of herbs to family and friends.

4.     Make your own herbal teas with herbs such as peppermint, chamomile and lemon verbena.

5.      If you have the room, grow your own fruit tree(s).  Pick a fruit you will use often and in various ways.

6.       Preserve the fruit you grow so you can enjoy it out of season, or make your own jam.

7.       When you’ve finished with some jars (i.e. jam jars) keep them and reuse them to preserve your fruit in.

8.       Dry out your fruit so you can enjoy it out of season.

9.      Purchase some fregie sacks – available from Your Cheeky Monkey.  Place the fresh produce you purchase from the shops in these reusable bags instead of the plastic bags supplied.

10.    Take reusable bags shopping with you or invest in some really trendy hand made reusable fabric bags.

11.    Purchase reusable cloth nappies – Bubbalooba have some adorable hand made cloth nappies.

12.   Make your own house hold cleaning products and reuse the containers again and again.  My Green Sopabox has some excellent ideas and recipes for home made goods.  As does this JOLI blog.

13.   Visit second hand clothing shops instead of always purchasing brand new clothes simply because you can afford to do so.  This is a double win as the money spent in these shops goes towards people who are struggling to make ends meet.

14.  Collect water in buckets whenever you rinse your dishes and use this water on your garden to bring down your water bill.

15.   Get back to basics and make your own cookies, bread, pasta etc.  You avoid the preservatives and additives in food by doing this, cut down on the amount of packaging you discard as well as having fresh produce to enjoy.

16.    When buying eggs, visit local egg farms to purchase your eggs.  They're cheaper and you can return the cardboard egg trays when you're finished with it.  Or if you've got the room and desire, have some pet chickens.

17.    Use flannels instead of throw away dish cloths.  You can wash and reuse them indefinitely.

18.   Buy in bulk. You'll end up having less packaging to throw away.

These are just a few suggestions.  As I think of more I will add them to the list.  If you have any other suggestions please share them with us.  We’d love to hear from you.

By JOLI Natural Skin Care



  1. A great blog Jodie with some very useful and practical information. You can buy fruit salad trees which have more than one type of fruit on them. Great if you don't have the room for a tree of each type of fruit. I will be sharing this @mygreensoapbox. Great for people to know how they can reduce their carbon footprint :)

  2. Great suggestion Sonja. I didn't know about fruit salad trees. What a great idea!

  3. Great post Jodi!! Have shared on twitter :-)