Zero-Waste Challenge for London Families: Tips to Protect The Environment and Your Wallet

There is a common misconception that living eco-friendly is a more expensive lifestyle and we want to show you that it is the exact opposite!

We know that the pandemic has hit many London families hard and we want to support you by reducing your waste while saving money. Make the effort to create change now and it will eventually seem like second nature. The most important thing is trying your best and involving your children in order to instil a lifelong interest in protecting their planet, because at Express Waste Removals they only use environmentally friendly waste disposal methods.

Here are some things you can do:

Make a Weekly Meal Plan

A great way to make sure you don’t waste any food is to plan your meals each week. Get the whole family involved and ask what they’d like for every meal in the day such as breakfasts, lunches, dinners and snacks and only buy exactly what is needed. Knowing exactly what to order or buy in the shop is key to not overspending and wasting food unnecessarily.  So, hold everyone in your household accountable for reducing your waste and cost.

Use more non-disposable Products

Single use products are one of the biggest contributors to landfills and pollution, which is a huge shame as non-disposable alternatives are almost always available and more affordable often! Picture how many disposable nappies, wipes and cloths you would go through in a single day with just one baby. Buying reusable nappies and baby washcloths that you can be used over and over will save you money and generate less rubbish. Invest in reusable cotton wool pads that you wash and bamboo earbuds. Replace your cling film and foil with stretchy lids and reusable oven liners. It really doesn’t take long at all to find fantastic alternatives that will last for years and save you massive amounts of money in the long run. And for the household waste that is still left over consider recycling or get Express Waste Removals involved to help out with that.

Make smarter Food Choices

local-food-shopping-to-save-money-and-reduce-packagingReducing the amount of meat and fish you eat as a family will reduce the cost of your weekly food shop, help the environment and also improve your family’s health. Pick healthier and more affordable sources of protein like chickpeas, beans, lentils, tofu, soya and peas, which can be bought in bulk and are much cheaper than meat or seafoods. You can also access these easily at many zero-waste supermarkets, whereas unless you go to a butcher, meat is often packaged in lots of plastic.

Eating less meat and fish products and more veg and fruit can decrease the risk of heart disease and strokes, as the saturated fats in meat can contribute to weight gain, high cholesterol, blood pressure and further complications. Sadly, one of the most heavily plastic packaged foods you will find in supermarkets is fruit and vegetables. For a waste-free alternative that tastes much better, go to local fruit and veg shops. Rather than being imported, the fruit and veg will be locally sourced, making them much more eco-friendly and organic. Supporting your local fruit and veg store is not only better for the environment, but it is often cheaper, and it will always taste better and support the small shops and businesses in your area!

If you have a garden, then the best option is to grow your own fruit and vegetables at home. You can control exactly what you are eating and you can use organic products to support the growth of the plants with your garden waste and compost. Get the family involved and they could develop a love for growing their own food and continue it in the future. You will save ridiculous amounts of money by investing some of your time each week into growing food. Research how to use seeds and roots from fruit and veg that you’d usually throw away to grow your own vegetables.

Upcycle old Furniture

If an item of your household furniture has become outdated, or it is slightly broken, don’t throw it away! It is so simple to upcycle furniture and you create a bespoke piece for little to no cost in the process.

For example, perhaps you have an old table that is slightly damaged, has a broken leg and really doesn’t suit the style of your home. Rather than binning it, the solution is simple! You can use wood filler to fill in any chipped or damaged areas, wait for it to dry and sand it down. Check out some useful YouTube tutorials about upcycling ideas to be inspired. Clean down the dressing table with sugar soap, sand it down to remove any tough bits. Then, prime it with a furniture primer and give it two coats of paint with the colour of your choice or even a trendy pattern! Remove the handles prior to painting and soak them in equal parts vinegar and ketchup to get them looking brand new.

Think how much waste would be reduced if everyone made the effort to upcycle a piece of furniture they would’ve otherwise sent to landfill. And at Express Waste Removal they try to donate old furniture to charities and only deliver it to the landfill, if there’s no other option, which offers you a skip hire alternative.

Living as a zero waste family is not as hard as you may have thought and hopefully you will give the above tips a try – your kids will thank you for it later!