Simple swaps with Plastic Free July

Published on 27 July 2020

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Whanganui District Council is pleased to once again support Plastic Free Whanganui with its promotion of Plastic Free July, which is a global movement aimed at reducing plastic pollution. 

Whanganui District Council Waste Advisor, Stuart Hylton, says, “Plastic Free July is a great initiative because it reminds people to take the time to audit their use of plastic and find alternatives.” 

Stuart Hylton say reusing is preferable to recycling because it stops plastic being produced at source, saving energy and reducing waste and pollution. 

This year’s theme for Plastic Free July is all about simple swaps for single-use plastic items, Stuart Hylton says. 

Plastic Free Whanganui spokesperson, Robin Williamson, says her organisation has been connecting with the community through a River Market stall this month. 

“We’ve had some great conversations with marketgoers about the things they’ve tried,” Robin Williamson says. 

“People are open-minded about trying simple swaps they might not have considered. 

“Easy swaps include using containers with lids or beeswax wraps instead of cling wrap, bamboo toothbrushes and cotton buds, metal straws and reusable coffee cups and water bottles.” 

Robin Williamson says this year the sale of cloth bags at the market stall has been “really slow – which is great! It’s been such a transformation seeing everyone carrying their own shopping bags.” 

She says the shift away from the plastic ‘singlet’ supermarket shopping bag over the last couple of years shows how society can change. 

For tips on reducing your use of plastic and to find out more about the international Plastic Free July movement, visit:

For a guide to local businesses that allow you to bring in refillable containers, check out The Rubbish Trip’s Zero Waste guide.


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