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Minimising Waste

Handy Tips for minimising waste in your home

Buy Quality

It is far better to buy a quality item that will give you many years of use than to buy a cheap item that is not fit for purpose and has to be thrown out a couple of months later.

Not only is buying a cheap and nasty item unsatisfying and a waste of money, doing so gives you another job to do because you then have to dispose of it. We’ve all made the mistake of buying a cheap and nasty piece of furniture or electronic item that we’ve then had to load up and take to the tip not long after purchase.

As Vivienne Westwood said, “Buy less, choose well: that’s the maxim. Quality not quantity. That’s the most environmentally friendly thing you can do.”

Reduce Food Waste

According to OzHarvest food waste costs Australian households $2,000 - $2,500 per year, and our top five most wasted foods are vegetables, bread, fruit, bagged salad and leftovers.

Did you know that having your fridge set between 0°C and 5°C keeps your food fresher for longer and prevents food waste? The website has some great tips on getting the most out of your fridge and freezer, as well as tips on how to effectively store different foods. They include information on how to use your shopping list to save money and reduce food waste. also publish a range of recipes and ideas on using leftovers.

You can also make your fruit and vegetable waste into a soil booster and keep the plants in your garden healthy and happy. Worm farms and composters are relatively inexpensive to buy and super rewarding.

Buy Less Packaging

Look for products that come in environmentally friendly packaging or that are either presented with no packaging or minimal packaging.

Some products are wrapped for protection on the outside, and then the individual items within are wrapped in additional redundant packaging inside. This is a waste of resources and poor environmental practice. Buying such items also means you then must spend more time cleaning up all the packaging and loading up your bin afterwards.

Instead, buy from businesses that do the right thing and use less packaging, environmentally friendly packaging, or allow you to bring your own container or bag. For example, many cafes allow you to bring your own reusable coffee cup. The choices you make when you spend your money support and encourage environmentally responsible businesses.

Buy in Bulk

Buying in bulk when you can afford to not only reduces the amount of packaging you throw out, it saves you money.  It also saves you time because you don’t have to trot back to the shop a few days later and buy the same product again.  For most of us, less time spent grocery shopping is a good thing! 

Buy Recycled

If you support businesses that use recycled materials in their products and packaging, you are supporting recycling industries and removing waste from our environment.  There are many innovative and competitively priced products made from recycled materials on the market, from swimwear to furniture and everything in between. 

Download our printable guide to minimising waste in your home