Plastic Free July is part of a global movement that has inspired 120 million participants in 177 countries. This environmental movement is calling for the refusal of single-use plastics, or ones that can not be recycled. Examples of single-use plastics include plastic knives and forks, plastic water bottles and coffee cup lids. Companies like Starbucks and McDonalds plan to go plastic free by 2020 and will save 1 billion straws.
It Hurts Wildlife
Sea creatures can confuse bags of plastic for food. Turtles eat jellyfish which plastic bags can resemble while underwater. Eating plastic is bad for digestion and can make it impossible for them to dive for food, they will starve because of all the plastic in the ocean. Chemicals from plastics can be carried by fish which can harm us as well.
What You Can Do
There are many ways to cut back on plastic use. Instead of using plastic water bottles, switch to a reusable water bottle, such as a Klean Kanteen to drink from. In addition to reusable water bottles made from stainless steel they also make reusable straws. Take one with you on the go so you can forego the single-use plastic variety the next time you hit the drive-thru or movie theater. Not only is this option more environmentally safe, but it is also a good way to support a local Chico company.
Bee's Wraps are re-useable wraps made from cotton, jojoba oil, and beeswax that can be used to wrap sandwiches or the leftovers in your casserole dish that would have previously been used with plastic wrap or ziplock bags. Bee's Wraps are reusable, washable, and compostable. The combination of beeswax and jojoba oil have natural anti-microbial properties to make sure you can use your wrap over and over again. Klean Kanteens and Bee's Wrap products are available online or in our Kitchen Store.
Another option is to use a cloth or mylar reusable shopping bag when you go to the store. Not only are these bags better for the environment, but they tear less easily than some plastic bags. Our Gift Shop, Vintage Store, and Kitchen Store all carry a selection of shoppers and totes made from recycled materials or canvas from popular brands like Blue Q, Papaya, Natural Life, and Collins. If you can't make it into our store visit our online boutique:
If you are a parent, consider Little Red Hen Gift Shop's selection from Green Toys. These toys are made from 100 percent recycled milk jugs and contain no sharp edges.
There are many things that we can do to reduce our use of single-use plastics, not only as a part of plastic free July but for the foreseeable future. By making simple changes in our day to day lives, we can reduce our carbon footprint and make a positive change to save the planet. For more information, please visit https://www.plasticfreejuly.org/.