Reduce, re-use, recycle
As a family
Reduce is always the first step and one of our favourite maxims at Skiology is “what gets measured gets managed”. Measuring your families plastic waste is as easy as having an emptry bag and that is all, this is how we made a 30% reduction in a week and have stuck to it. 50% within a month is easy.
- Take a shopping bag and place next to recycling or bin. Tell all who use the bin the plan is to see what waste we contribute so we can make a reduction. If you need to get them on board there is a great David Attenborough clip you can watch here. We told our kids the plan is to reduce plastic in the sea so that it does not kill the fishes.
- Tell bin users to religiously study labels on packaging to make sure you are not trying to recycle something you can’t. Be vigilant if it does not say you can recycle it, chances are you can’t since only around 5% of plastics can be recycled. Put anything you can’t recycle into new bag.
- At the end of a week, review, empty the bag and study together what you fin, talk about how the next week you will produce less. Be realistic, take small steps, take a photo for reference, dispose of waste. Repeat and see if anything comes up again the next week and repeat. Do this for a month and you can easily make a 50% reduction
Here is an example of what we found after a few weeks of doing this, and our solutions, we broke items into 3 categories. n.b not posting our first photo as that was embarrassingly a lot!
|Herbs||Buy in bulk from market and freeze. Buy what we can’t buy from market from alternative super market.|
|Cheese||Buy from market|
|Tortillas||Brought a tortilla press to make our own!|
|Sweets||Day on day off with packaged sweets on day off replace with fruit and veggie snacks|
|Pomme pot||Day on day off, having from a jar on day off|
|Wipes||Replaced with biodegradable compostable wipes|
|Screw packaging||Use pick and mix screws at DIY store|
|Cosmetics||Look for suppliers with recyclable packaging|
We have been doing this for a month now and for us and you need to do this for you as your results will be different depending on what you consume however for us the key learnings are
- Once a week seek out sellers who sell without packaging for us the local market. Take your own bags and view these as your bags for life. These are what we have and love.
- Once a month(ish) visit a larger store where you buy from dispensers and bring your own containers.
- Things you have resistance changing like kids wanting to eat sweets start with every other day then slowly reduce to e.g only sweets on a Sunday.
That is it.
As a business
At a business level this is so much easier because we have a set menu and a set shopping list, we simply analyse the shopping list and make the change.
This is easily transferable to a family e.g I know that every week we will have toast, cereal, fajitas, roast, spagetti Bolognese etc so I can proactively make a change with these e.g buying loaves not in plastic bags, buying cereal from the dispensers not in a packet, making fajitas etc
Below is our company shopping list from last season with examples of what we can buy and use our own bags for highlighted in orange and all that we need to get without packaging in a second store highlighted in purple. Vegetables are easy to make the change with as they all have natural packaging however as you can see dairy you can use the dairy counter, meat from the butcher to reduce in other sections etc If only I could get my family to follow a set meal plan we could implement this too…
You can read a bit more about what we do as a company in this article in a local magazine.
At an environmental level
3.5 of us (Luc at 18 month old) spent the day as part of the team for the clean up the mountain programme in Avoriaz this week to see what impact we and our guests could have at level outside of the chalets.
I am so happy to tell you that mountain inhabitants and visitors are pretty good at not littering, whoop! The area for development, the item that we all picked up 90% of the time is cigarette butts which take over 100 years to decompose and can choke animals. Surprisingly much more bitt were in the resort than on the mountains so if you do smoke please use the ashtrays in resort or at any lift you can ask for an ashtray and you will be given a free lovely branded souvenir to take with you and keep.
If you are coming on holiday with us, rest assured we don’t believe in putting any of our beliefs on our guests. This is all stuff we do in the background and never to our guests discomfort, no one wants to think of or discuss packaging on holiday!