udra Barbour with reusable produce bag

Published 19 June 2019

Audra Barbour and her family have been environmentally conscious for a while, but have recently taken recycling and waste reduction to the next level.

Audra says it’s become easier to recycle and reduce use of single-use plastics as more information and options have become increasingly available to her Vista-based family – husband Nathan and sons Kaeden (8) and Casey (6).

“We have made changes as we go,” said Audra.

“We started off small with some simple things like taking reusable shopping bags to the supermarket.”

However, with reusable mesh produce bags now commercially available, Audra has been able to further reduce the amount of single-use plastic that comes into her home.

Audra also tries to buy in bulk where possible, avoiding the use of snack-size packets and containers.

With the availability of bees‑wax wraps and sandwich-sized lunchboxes, Audra’s children don’t have cling wrap or plastic bags in their lunch boxes.

“The kids’ school has encouraged kids to bring nude food. With the message also coming from the school, it really helps,” said Audra.

Nude food has also extended to the family favourite of sushi takeaway.

“I now say no to the little soy sauce fish and try to remember to take a container to pick up the sushi rolls.”

Unavoidable soft plastics are dropped into REDcycle bins at Coles or Woolworths for later recycling.

The family uses a kitchen caddy to collect household organics to go in their green bin, which is processed into nutrient-rich mulch following collection.

For anyone about to embark on a waste-reduction journey, Audra said one of the easiest ways to get started is to change one thing at a time.

“Some people might not have thought about it, but we can all help out and do our bit.

“We don’t want landfill to be getting worse,” said Audra, who gets a lot of information on recycling from social media, including where to shop for specialised products.

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