a little cameo

Life in Colombia and everything that goes with it

Preposterous packaging

I am dumbfounded by the amount of packaging they have here in America, so much for the reducing part of reduce, reuse, recycle.

It was my first foray in the supermarket today. The supermarket in Target that is. It was a pretty quick shop, and I am looking forward to when I can take a long leisurely stroll in the supermarket, moving up and down every aisle with cool plastic trolleys that can be pushed from any angle except with the quirk that they don’t like to reverse.

A brief observation is that everything comes over-packaged. The tissue boxes have a little plastic wrap covering the cardboard opening, but they have longer openings and no plastic ‘curtains’ on the inside. I don’ t know that the external wraps would make it any more hygienic, but I guess that’s the look they’re going for.

I was shocked in the fresh produce aisle when I came across a sweet potato completely sealed in a plastic case. I was so surprised I held it high and waved it over my head, screeching in my Australian accent “Look! They even wrap individual sweet potatoes!” Followed quickly by “Oh, it is microwaveable. No way!” You just need to stab that thing with a fork and throw it in the microwave. Snacky snack.

I’m not the world’s most environmentally friendly person (I’ll admit to loving long hot showers) but I am definitely going to beat the average American as I try to find products without all the bells and whistles packaging.

Tasty treat:
Frickles – fried crumbed pickles. Yummo. Can be found at Birds Cafe on Franklin Avenue.

Surprises:
No one has appreciated my accent yet. Maybe I just need to talk more. Or louder.

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One thought on “Preposterous packaging

  1. Yes, we have a huge problem with single-use plastic and “disposable” plastic packaging. You might be interested to check out Amazon’s “frustration free packaging”.
    A lot of plastic packaging is designed to allow the consumer to see the product, or to discourage shoplifting. We could completely eliminate this class of packaging for mail order products, which is what Amazon is working on.

    We also just need to get smarter about how we package products in stores. More glass containers instead of plastic. More metal lids instead of plastic. More glued cardboard cartons rather than outer plastic wrapping. Not only is plastic heinous from an environmental standpoint – it turns out having toxic plastic touching our food isn’t such a great idea. It’s surprising, in a way, we haven’t figured out making poisonous stuff always bites us in the ass. I’m working on a list of products with plastic-free packaging, really just as a starting point. You’ll see environmental sites recommending people avoid plastic packaging, but in the real world that just isn’t possible because we don’t have plastic-free alternatives. You want toothpaste and deodorant? There are no plastic-free alternatives available in stores. Here’s my blog if you are interested: http://noplasticpackaging.wordpress.com

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