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91% of plastic isn't recycled!

Hello, something that constantly bothers me is plastic. The stats are everywhere… plastic usage is doubling every 10 years, 91% of plastic is not recycled and micro-plastics have been found in the deep sea, at high altitude and even in human breast milk.

One of my pet hates is single use plastic; despite this I still end up with some items in my shopping - either I forget, or there is no alternative, but I know I could do SO much better!

So I was trying to think of easy do’s we could advocate:

- go first to the vrac section before you look in the pre-packed shelves

- take reusable bags for vrac items

- try to make purchasing decision based on the packaging, where practical…

- if you end up with this packaging at home, try to reuse it

- speak to the shop owner / customer services about this issue, I think we have collective influence

Please share your thoughts and ideas

And have a look at this article from National Geographic entitled A Whopping 91% of Plastic Isn't Recycled.

35 views3 comments


Apr 22, 2023

I have been looking more into it as my husband was playing devil’s advocate and saying that it’s not that straight forward, the argument is nuanced, and he’s right.

It seems there is an up front ‘cost’ to producing paper bags and reusable bags which has to be balanced against the detrimental effects of plastic bags/packaging. However using alternatives does cut down in the huge problem of plastic litter, which affects all corners of the planet.

Things to Consider

Because reusable and paper bags have a huge environmental cost upfront, and plastic bags create greater negative effects after being used, it is hard to determine which type of bag is truly the most sustainable. Regardless of whether the bag is…


Victoria Osborne
Victoria Osborne
Apr 17, 2023

I've Googled 'single use plastics in France' and it brought up many useful links and stats. and helped to interpret the most recent legislation....but I'm still not buying it...sorry for the groaner pun. All of us, actively try to avoid purchasing goods wrapped in plastic and chose loose when we can but realistically it's only skimming the surface when one looks around at other's baskets or trolleys brimming over with plastic wrapped groceries. A major obstacle though has to be food preservation, hygiene, packaging and transportation requirements. Side note: is it just me but even when buying loose why does every apple have to have an individual sticker. The reality is the recent measures aren't going far enough or …


Gill Kelley
Gill Kelley
Apr 17, 2023

So, not too much to buy today, so my local Supermarket is Intermarché in Puy l'Eveque.

Following Debbie's instructions I went to the vrac area first and could get my cashew nuts in the bag in the photo.

Bananas were not wrapped - they have their own great wrapping that's totally natural. I actively looked at the guidance for recycling on everything else I bought, and all said all parts could be recycled (or go in the recycling bin).

I think that was pretty good for a local supermarket. There was enough choice for me to do this. Now I need to remember to put it into the recycling once the packaging is taken off!

5* for this store, unless…

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