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How to stop food waste

How to stop food waste
Food waste is a major global issue that not only impacts the environment, but also results in wasted resources and money. According to the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization, one third of all food produced in the world is lost or wasted.
There are many reasons why food waste occurs, including overproduction, lack of proper storage, and strict cosmetic standards for produce. Consumers also contribute to food waste by purchasing more food than they need or throwing away perfectly good food because it has reached its expiration date.
The environmental impact of food waste is significant. When food waste ends up in landfills, it decomposes and produces methane, a potent greenhouse gas. Additionally, the resources that go into producing food, such as water, fertilizer, and energy, are also wasted when food is not consumed.
There are steps that can be taken to reduce food waste. For example, grocery stores and restaurants can donate excess food to food banks and other organizations. Consumers can also reduce food waste by planning meals in advance, purchasing only what they need, and using leftovers in creative ways.
Another way to reduce food waste is composting. Composting is the process of breaking down organic matter, such as food scraps, into a nutrient-rich soil amendment. Composting can be done at home or through community composting programs.
There are also some initiatives that are focused on reducing food waste. For example, “Too Good to Go” is a mobile app that connects consumers with local restaurants and grocery stores that have surplus food. This way, consumers can purchase meals at a discounted price and help reduce food waste.
In conclusion, food waste is a major problem that impacts the environment and results in wasted resources. There are many ways to reduce food waste, including proper planning and purchasing, composting, and using apps such as “Too Good to Go”. By raising awareness of food waste, we can work together to create a more sustainable food system.

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How to compost

How to compost
Composting is a great way to reduce waste and create nutrient-rich soil for your garden. Here are the steps to start your own compost pile:
Choose a location for your compost pile. It should be in a sunny spot, away from any buildings or trees. You'll also want to make sure it's in a location that's easy for you to access and turn the pile.
Gather materials for your compost pile. You'll need a combination of "green" materials, like kitchen scraps and grass clippings, and "brown" materials, like dead leaves and twigs. Green materials are high in nitrogen and will help to heat up the pile, while brown materials are high in carbon and will help to keep the pile aerated.
Start layering your materials. Start with a layer of brown materials on the bottom, followed by a layer of green materials. Repeat this process, making sure to alternate the layers.
Water your pile. As you add materials, make sure to keep the pile moist. A well-watered pile will break down faster than a dry one.
Turn your pile. Every few days, use a pitchfork to turn the pile. This will help to aerate it and distribute the moisture evenly.
Wait. Composting takes time, but the end result is worth it. Depending on the size of your pile and the materials you've used, it can take anywhere from a few weeks to a few months for the pile to fully break down.
Use your compost. Once your pile has broken down into a rich, dark soil, it's ready to use. Use it to enrich your garden beds, add it to your potted plants, or use it to top dress your lawn.
By following these simple steps, you can create your own nutrient-rich compost and reduce the amount of waste in your household. Happy composting!

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5 Tips to reduce your carbon footprint

5 Tips to reduce your carbon footprint
5 Tips for Reducing Your Carbon Footprint
Climate change is one of the most pressing issues of our time, and it's more important than ever to take steps to reduce our carbon footprint. Here are five simple tips you can use to lower your impact on the environment:
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle: This is a simple and effective way to lower your carbon footprint. By reducing the amount of waste you produce, reusing items you already have, and recycling materials, you can help to conserve resources and prevent pollution.
Use Public Transportation or Carpool: Transportation is a major source of greenhouse gas emissions, so it's important to find ways to reduce the amount of driving you do. Using public transportation or carpooling with friends and colleagues is a great way to lower your carbon footprint.
Invest in Energy-Efficient Appliances: Many appliances and electronics consume a lot of energy, which can add up over time. By investing in energy-efficient appliances, you can reduce your energy consumption and lower your carbon footprint.
Choose Renewable Energy Sources: Another way to lower your carbon footprint is to invest in renewable energy sources such as solar or wind power. This not only reduces your own carbon footprint, but also helps to support the growth of clean energy.
Plant Trees: Trees absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, so planting trees is a great way to lower your carbon footprint. You can plant trees in your own yard or participate in local tree-planting initiatives.
By following these tips, you can make a real difference in the fight against climate change. Every little bit helps, and by taking steps to reduce your carbon footprint, you're doing your part to protect the planet for future generations."

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Eco tips for cleaning

Eco tips for cleaning

Eco tips for cleaning - top 10 tips

Here are some top tips that include home made cleaning mixes to eco friendly cleaning brands.

1. Use Lemons

Lemons are nature's cleaning wunderkind. They have powerful antiseptic and antibacterial properties and are a natural deodorizer due to their high acidic content. Here are some suggestions for how to use lemons in your home: Have your copper pans lost their shine? Dip half a lemon in salt or baking powder to scour your pans to their former glory. Combine lemon peel and white vinegar in a jar, allow to marinate for a few days, then strain out the peel to use the vinegar as a cleaner. A small dish containing vinegar and lemon juice will absorb odors. Rub a slice of lemon across your chopping board to disinfect the surface

2. Use Baking Soda

Baking soda, like lemon, is another one of nature's cleaners. Also known as sodium bicarbonate, this mildly alkaline substance functions as a gentle abrasive, deodorant and more.

3. Use White Vinegar

White vinegar is a weak acetic acid that can be used in almost all aspects of home cleaning, as it has strong antibacterial properties.

Vinegar is your friend again here to descale your kettle, although you can use lemon juice, too. Pour a 50/50 mixture of white vinegar and water into your kettle, allow it to boil, then rinse the kettle out once it cools down a little but is still warm.

4 Use natural cotton dishcloths

Ditch those microfibre plastic dishcloths for completely natural options. We have a number of stylish cellulous cotton Munch dishcloths that can be composted.

5 Use plants

Like us, there are some smells insects and small animals can’t stand and a strategic placing of plants can help you get rid of them, without having to turn to chemicals as you're green cleaning your home.

Spiders don’t like citronella oil, so add a few drops to any essential oil burners where you have a spider issue or burn some citronella scented candles like these ones.

Mice on the other hand, really don’t like peppermint or spearmint. Install a few herb pots with mint where you’ve got a mice problem or add some drops of peppermint essential oil (20-30) to cotton wool balls and insert them into the holes and cracks where they’re getting in.

6 Get rid of kitchen paper towels

Did you know kitchen towel can’t be recycled? It’s often made of valuable virgin wood pulp, uses masses of toxic chemicals to be bleached and processed and it comes in plastic packaging. So what can you do?

For green cleaning, swap to a reusable kitchen towel (yes it exists), that are made from bamboo or other ‘unpaper’ materials, that can be washed and reused many many times. Try our Munch unpaper towels here.

7 Refillery cleaning options

There are many branded cleaning options on the market and our favourites are Ecostore, Green Goddess and Little foot. All can be refilled at our refillery online or at our store. The refillery has everything from dog shampoo to dishwasher tabs

8 Get the kids involved

Don't let the kids watch you clean. Get them involved so they learn how to look after things and see you care for both your family and the environment.

9 Open the windows and let the sun in

Sometimes, the air quality inside your home can be more toxic than the air quality outdoors. Everything from pet dander to pollen to mold to chemicals can flare up a person’s allergies or asthma, thus making the air unhealthy. 

To keep things fresh, open your windows every so often to let in the outside. Also let the sun in as again it freshens your house and helps to clean.  

A new study in 2020 found that UV light can help kill bacteria. New research shows that sunlight kills potentially harmful bacteria and improves air quality in indoor environments.

10 create some joy in cleaning

Make shopping for cleaning products fun for you and the kids! They love refilling containers with conditioner, body wash ect. It's an opportunity for (clean) sensory play while educating about the environment and creating minimal waste. 

Put the music on and use the time while cleaning to clear your head from the busy day. Try to bring some joy to cleaning as it has to be done, it is not going away and maybe you can create joy in it!

 

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Eco tips for your bathroom

Eco tips for your bathroom

Eco tips for your bathroom - top 10 tips

So how much unnecessary waste do you think you create in your bathroom? We do know there will be some that is necessary but there is a lot you can do to create very little waste in your bathroom.

1 Toilet paper

Yes a necessity of course. But for hard core greenies there are wash towels available with sprays that you can use. Keep a bucket in your toilet for the used wash towels and then wash them. To be honest this seems a little too hard for us.

So for us, toilet paper is a must. Toilet paper goes into our water ways and disintegrates so not bad. But it really is about the source of the toilet paper.  There are a number of great brands such as Greencane who source their paper from sustainable forests. Their paper is made from bamboo and recycled sugarcane.

2 Toilet brush

An easy eco swap here is to replace that plastic toilet brush with a wooden one.

3 Soap

We live in a world that seeks convenience in all parts of our life. The pump bottle of liquid soap is one of those. Usually they come in a plastic bottles. If you already have one, keep it and just refill it at your local refillery or online through us. We have Hand soap as well as Shampoo and Conditioner. You can also replace that plastic bottle with a glass bottle.

Or you can use a traditional hand soap and a bamboo dish to stand it on.

Then we get to types of soaps. SAY NO to PALM OIL unless it is from a SUSTAINABLE FOREST. A soap does not need a hundred and one ingredients, simple ingredients are best. Remember everything that goes into our water ways effects our fish etc. If you have sensitive skin look for oatmeal soaps as they are gentle on the skin.

4 Toothbrush

Get rid of that plastic brush and replace it with a Bamboo toothbrush. We have ethically sourced Adult and Child toothbrushes. Try buying different coloured ones so you don't get them all mixed up.

5 Toothpaste

We are still waiting for one of the large toothpaste companies to produce toothpaste in either reusable tubes or biodegradable ones. We would love to see refilleries offering toothpaste in bulk so people can put them in glass jars etc. We offer the toothpaste tabs which you chew in your mouth and use them like toothpaste which are a really good option. They are great for travelling and camping too.

6 Hairbrush

Replace that plastic brush with a sustainably sourced wood brush. There are many options and styles on the market.

7 Face cleanses and other face products

There are many brands on the market that offer a green alternative to caring for your face. Try brands like Tailor, Welda, Antipodes, Aelph to name a few.

8 Face wipes and cloths

Replace those throw away face wipes with NZ wool reusable face wipes by nil products. These are eco friendly from the source and from a waste free point of view as they last years.

9 Shaving

Get rid of that plastic razor and replace with a good quality stainless steel razer. Make sure you find a brand like nil who not only sells the razors but will collect back the blades.

10 Cleaning the bathroom

Head to your local refillery or buy on line through us an eco friendly toilet cleaner, floor cleaner and multi purpose spray. We carry brands like LittleFoot, Green Goddess and Ecostore, these brands do not have any harmful chemicals for our water ways or for your skin.

So that is about it for now. Make sure you check out our 10 tips for an eco friendly kitchen.

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