With the addition of a Mini Muncher kitchen caddy and a few simple changes, Sam McArdle’s family is down to just one small bag of rubbish a week.
Just 18 months ago and with a newborn child, Sam and her husband Peter started using a Mini Muncher to collect household organic waste, including food scraps, paper towels and tissues, for their green organics bin.
“It was just so easy, but it has made a huge difference,” said Sam.
The McArdle’s rubbish levels dropped further when they started separating soft plastics, after being inspired by an episode of The War on Waste.
Soft plastics, such as biscuit wrappers, baby food containers and plastic bags, are collected in a small bin and dropped off at the local supermarket for recycling.
Sam says it will be exciting to see just how much more her family can reduce waste. They are now concentrating on buying less items with packaging, including pre-packaged items, such as sachets with biscuits or yoghurt, and instead buying in bulk.
“I feel guilty if I use plastic bags,” said Sam, who even uses cloth produce bags rather than use the plastic bags provided by supermarkets for loose fruit and vegetables.
The McArdles have also given up shopping weekly for groceries.
“I used to go shopping every week on a Friday. Now I go shopping when I run out so we make sure we get through everything.”
Plastic and zip-lock bags and cling wrap have been dropped altogether from their shopping list, choosing to use reusable containers instead.
Sam is a keen op-shopper and also enjoys receiving hand-me-down clothes for her daughter from her older nieces.
“You can get into a mindset. Sometimes we buy things because we like shopping, but we might have something similar already that would do the job.”