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10 easy ways less household zero waste free nz

1. Make a leftovers soup at the end of each week or fortnight.

Go through your pantry and wardrobe, and put any veggies that you still haven’t used up into a big pot to make some soup. This is a great way to use up veggies that aren’t looking their best anymore, and you can always freeze the leftovers for those busy days that you didn’t have a chance to cook instead of ordering takeaways.

leftover soup nz zero waste free
Leftover Soup: An easy peasy & healthy dinner option

2. Use the food scraps.

Did you know that you can eat the leaves off your cauliflower? Or the greens from the tops of carrots, radishes, and turnips? There’s heaps of bits of food that we wouldn’t necessarily think of eating, but will save you needing to throw them out, and will save you needing to buy more plastic wrapped veggies to top your supply up!

 

3. Grow a herb garden.

Even if you don’t have the space for a full vegetable garden, growing a few herbs in some pots is a great way to cut down on waste. The amount of packaging used for just a small bit of dried herbs is crazy! But you can plant a few herbs that’ll sometimes taste even better than the dried version! Plus, if you plant perennial herbs like sage and rosemary, they’ll just keep growing in your backyard with no effort from you!

 

4. Ditch the Nappies.

We’ve written a blog post on how to do “Elimination Communication”, but even though this isn’t for everyone, it doesn’t mean you can’t cut down on the nappies you use by letting your kid go bare bum outside sometimes! You can put them in a pair of tog bottoms or let them go bare bum on a hot day outside! It’s also a great way to air out that bottom from nappies all day long.

 

5. Use newspaper instead of plastic to line your rubbish bin.

Not getting plastic bags at the supermarket is one of the best things you can do for the environment. But what do you then line your rubbish bin with? Why not newspaper? Simply put newspaper on the bottom of your kitchen bin, and then give your bin a light rinse each time you empty it!

 

6. Go op shopping

Probably my favourite one! Why buy new if you can find what you’re looking for at you local op shop at a fraction of the price, and often still in excellent condition! Plus most opshops support charities - so not only are you saving the resources to make stuff new, saving the packaging, and keeping stuff out of landfill, you can also support a great cause while at it!

 

7. Join your local toy library

There are some amazing toys at our local toy library - great quality pieces that can not only save you $100’s of dollars on toys, but can also save the environment from all the toy packaging you would otherwise have to be throwing out.

toy library nz zero waste cheaper living ideas
A $50 per year membership, and access to great quality natural toys - like this cutting fruit set!

8. Buy quality over quantity

When buying stuff, first ask yourself whether you really need it. If it is really a need, look for a version that will last, or has the ability to be repaired, rather than something that will need to be replaced. It often works out better to buy wooden items second hand than plastic items new. The price is comparable, plus the wood will last you much longer!

 

9. Say no to presents

Or ask for experiences rather than gifts. Why not give your child a zoo membership for their birthday? Or a swimming pool membership? You could also ask your friends & family to chip in towards a much needed holiday for you instead of gifts for Christmas.

 

10. Bring your empty Back to the Wild jars back for a refill!

If you bring your glass jars back, these are sterilised, and then re-used. Saving the glass needing to be melted down! And saving you money! Amber glass jars give you a $1 store credit, and most our other jars & containers will give you a 50c store credit.

waste free amber glass natural products nz