Wasteless Pantry Mundaring News (22nd December 2017)

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year

from the Wasteless Pantry Mundaring Team

It has been an amazing year and we are so happy to be seeing the start of a shift to a low waste culture in WA!  We are thankful, as always, for our great community who have supported us the whole way.  It is wonderful to be making connections, feeling that belonging alongside other zero waste and plastic free enthusiasts (no matter your progress), and sharing all the tools we need to make this work.

As well as this, I am particularly mindful of how important it is to have the right people around you when you are trying to do big things (even by small steps).  We are very lucky to be working with Lizzy, Jade, James, Emily, Belinda and Tessa.  They have been the most reliable and supportive team I think I have ever had the privilege to work with.  It almost seems that they go about their days looking for ways to make things easier for others and to think a few steps ahead of what the store needs!

Working with Jeannie on this store has been quite the journey! Developing this community has far exceeded any expectations or visions we originally had of what this could be.  We are truly very lucky!

Sentimentality aside, there are a few things you might want to know …

  • Opening hours: Aside from the public holidays we are open as per usual! That means we will be open Sun Dec 24th 11 am to 5 pm, closed 25th & 26th, open Wed 27th/Thurs 28th/Fri 29th 9 am to 5:30 pm, open Sat 30th 9 am to 5 pm, open Sun 31st 11 am to 5 pm, closed Jan 1st then open again Tues 2nd 9 am to 5:30 pm
  • We are stocking zero waste hampers for those loved ones that want a gift.  There are big ones and little ones, ones for women, ones for men, ones for coffee lovers, and zero waste starter kits!
  • Aluminium and glass pump bottles are in stock and we now have a trigger spray attachment that fits these bottles too
  • Masa flour for tortilla making is now available
  • There are a bunch of different zero waste DIY dairy-free milk recipes on the recipe wall and we stock nut milk bags made from 100% hemp
  • We have gift jars ready to go for last minute, “Oh no, I forgot [insert relative’s name] was coming too!” moments
  • Gluten-free banana bread mix has been popular and we are getting great feedback about its versatility for a variety of cakes and slices.

Coming soon:

  • Who know’s what will happen in 2018 but we do have Pizza & Focaccia Bread Mix coming 🙂

 

 

Photo credits

Photo by Precision Focus


Wasteless Pantry Mundaring News (1st December 2017)

It’s so good to be chatting with you again!

It has been a little while between updates as we have been working hard to finally be able to say, “Yes, we are franchising” and, “Yes, there may well be a new Wasteless Pantry store coming to your neighbourhood in 2018!”  

The difficulty with running a store like ours is that we are so picky about why we do things, how we do things and who we do them with.  So, this has not been us dragging our feet, but rather making sure that moving forward you can trust that our standards have not changed and we will always be about community and waste first.  We really appreciate all your support and never want to take it for granted!

What’s been happening?

  • We started stocking some new useful reusables such as Onya bread bags, Vegan Wraps, Double Round Bento Tiffins (1400ml), large stainless steel To-Go Containers (1.4L capacity), Bento Compartment boxes with utensils (we’ve ordered more stock), and mini stainless steel containers (perfect for little snacks) 
  • We’ve added Yoshiki mix, raw Australian peanuts, green glace cherries (for your Christmas cake making), protein powder made from peas, vanilla beans and locally made dark choc and toasted coconut vegan protein granola (great as a snack too!)
  • Jeannie attended the Beyond Plastic Pollution Conference in Sydney and learnt all sorts of interesting info about waste and how different groups are trying to address it (see the events page if you want to come hear her summary)
  • Jeannie also ran our first Zero Waste Shopping Tour (hosted by EMRC) to give hands-on experience for those wanting to try it out for the first time (let us know if you missed it and would like us to do it again in the new year)
  • Since pretty much everyone uses toilet paper, we thought that stocking the Christmas wrapped version of Who Gives A Cr@p would be an idea so that you aren’t also having to buy single-use wrapping paper
  • We’re trying out Dark Roasted coffee beans from Skybury since so many of you love a strong flavoured coffee and we love locally grown beans! (House fans – House is a blend of dark and medium so we can mix some up if you are in need, don’t fret!)
  • We really are trying to be helpful with your festive preparations, we now stock food grade lavender and rose petals for making your gifts, beauty products and speciality tea blends
  • For those that are looking for a plastic-free sunscreen option and trying their hand at DIY – we have zinc oxide powder available loose plus a recipe on the board for you to try out (let us know if you tweak it and how it turns out)
  • Since we have so many new things coming in, we have had to discontinue other less popular items.  If you see a discounted tag, that’s why (hint: this is the only time we would suggest that you stock up if you use these products regularly)

Coming soon:

  • Gluten Free Banana Bread Mix should be in stock shortly to help with making your Christmas Fruit Cakes
  • Christmas gift jars and hampers (zero waste starter kit, wasteless women’s, wasteless men’s, wasteless coffee and wasteless travel) will be available shortly
  • Masa Flour (for tortilla making) and Doughnut Mix!
  • Plus glace apricots and choc jaffas will make their seasonal return
  • Pop in during December for tastings – this week is old-fashioned Christmas cake and next week is something with chocolate!
Feature image credit:
Photo by Ian Schneider on Unsplash

More Than Another Bulk Food Store

You want to reduce your waste and you make the effort to bring your own containers and bags for refilling.  Maybe you want to know that the places you shop at are doing all they can to avoid waste too.

We really care about this stuff!  Just recently we submitted an application to the Waste Authority of WA Infinity Awards and we had this to say for ourselves:

Wasteless Pantry is assisting the wider community to reduce the amount of waste that is generated, increase the proportion of materials recovered that would otherwise end up in the waste stream as well as reducing the amount of waste going to landfill. It actively communicates messages for behaviour change and promotes their adoption through a wide range of initiatives aimed at mainstream consumers. 

At its simplest, Wasteless Pantry is a zero waste and bulk food store. However, dig a little deeper and you’ll find that Wasteless Pantry is a unique store that was built entirely around this idea of being able to minimise waste and single-use plastics. We make it easy and achievable to reduce waste, you get to buy just what you need, and we enable you to turn waste reduction values into tangible actions. The rate of waste generation in the average household is growing rapidly and whilst many are alarmed by the statistics, the average person still feels that taking the actions required to reduce the figures is beyond their capabilities. Wasteless Pantry is an example of ‘the how’, providing education and role modelling of just how achievable it is to change behaviours in a sustainable way.

As a business model, it is also demonstrating best practice in waste management in the food retail sector, creating just 1.39kg of landfill waste in May 2017. This is less than 0.5% of what the average Western Australian household creates each month. 100% of recyclable waste created by the store was recycled (much higher than the 47% average for food retail stores) and a range of recyclable waste from the community was also diverted from landfill. 95% of organic waste generated by the store was composted. The food retail sector in Australia produces on average 1660kg of landfill per effective full-time employee per year. Wasteless Pantry generates less than 1% of this average, including very few resources that could otherwise be recovered.

What do you think?  Are we are doing okay?   Does it matter what waste we create?


Plastic Free July: Should You Bother?

Absolutely, YES!

I hear the same thing over and over.  “What I do doesn’t make a difference, there are so many people/government bodies/businesses/others that waste more than me, so why bother?”

And then I hear the reply, “Be the change you wish to see in the world”.

It’s not enough to want a better planet if that isn’t going to inspire you to not only think differently but also to ACT differently.

That is why Plastic Free July works.  It gets you to do something different.  It’s as small or as big a challenge as you think you can manage.  Many go into it thinking it will be easy.  I love these people. I was one of them.  The ones that think it will be easy are usually the ones most profoundly changed by it.  We find out that once you are truly aware of the issue on a personal level there is no going back.  You come face to face with the reality of just how much plastic waste is embedded in our everyday lives.  The blindfold of the daily routine is removed and you get to start seeing the world clearly via the multitude of decisions that we have to remake to succeed at the challenge.

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You do it as a community.  At this stage, it is a global community with individuals in more than 130 countries participating last year.  If you have questions, there will be answers.  If you have struggles, there will be support.  If you succeed, we will all cheer you on and delight in what you have achieved.  It is no small feat.

You’re family or housemates don’t have to be on board for you to join the challenge.  This is about the choices you make.  Encourage, support and share your experiences; be a role model of the change.  You never know who you will inspire!

With the media sharing more and more about the problems in the world around waste and unnecessary plastics, this is an actual solution.  It is a guide to get you started on a meaningful journey to solving the problem.  When enough people are involved, aware and conscious of just what is going on with our disposable culture and how to address it, the effect will be amazing.  But in the meantime, the changes you are making are leading to a real quality of life that is missing with a disposable lifestyle.  You can try telling me that you love drinking out of a disposable plastic straw, and I will smile at you whilst I savour sipping from the glass without a straw knowing that tomorrow someone else will be able to enjoy the same experience. Whilst 50 plus years from now someone else will still be trying to figure out why you thought that straw was so instrumental to your happiness.

Alone we still make a difference.

It’s only one day, one week, one month… how hard could it be?

Find out more about the challenge and join us by registering via http://www.plasticfreejuly.org/

If you have done the challenge before, share your experiences below to inspire newbies to give it a go!


Hot Cross Buns Recipe

We love Easter and especially the traditional Hot Cross Bun!

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Ingredients

  • 4 cups plain flour
  • 14g dried yeast
  • 1/4 cup caster sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons mixed spice
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 1/2 cups currants
  • 40g butter
  • 300ml milk
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten

Flour paste

  • 1/2 cup plain flour
  • 4 to 5 tablespoons water

Glaze

  • 1/3 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons caster sugar
  1. Warm butter and milk, combine with dry ingredients
  2. Knead on floured surface until smooth, place into oiled bowl covered with a damp tea towel and set aside for 1-1.5 hours until dough doubles
  3. Punch down dough and knead for 30 seconds.   Divide into 12 even ball-shaped portions and place on a greased tray 1cm apart. Cover and set aside for 30 minutes to double in size. Preheat oven to 170C
  4. Make flour paste by mixing together ingredients and pipe over buns to form cross. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until cooked through
  5. Make glaze by mixing ingredients over low heat until sugar dissolves, boil for 3-4 minutes and brush warm glaze over warm hot cross buns. Enjoy!

Eco Friendly Easter Guide

Aiming toward a zero waste Easter this year?

This time of year is for celebrating and unfortunately also seems to be about generating waste.  An article by Pre-Waste on 6 April 2012 indicates:

Since their development in early 19th century France and Germany, chocolate Easter eggs have quickly become seasonal bestsellers. In Italy, 40 million eggs equalling 6.848 tons of chocolate were consumed in 2010. As the chocolate egg has since its first appearance developed from the simple type wrapped in paper to the beribboned variety wrapped in brightest foil and packed in a box or basket, it leads to vast amounts of packaging waste. Approximately 4.370 tonnes of card and 160 tonnes of foil waste are generated in the UK during the holiday every year. Most of the plastic packaging used is not recyclable yet, which means it ends up in landfills.

That’s a lot of waste and whilst there have been improvements in the recyclability of packaging since the article was written, it is fair to say that just because packaging can be recycled does not mean that it is being recycled.

With a little creativity, you can turn this Easter in a low or no waste event!

Eco Easter Gift Idea Guide

How about a refillable reusable Easter egg?

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Hollow wooden eggs such as the ones offered at Wasteless Pantry are a blank canvas waiting to be decorated!  Fill with lollies, chocolates, flavoured almonds, sweet Easter wishes or money if that’s your preference.  Blank Goods have a great inspiration page to get your creativity flowing.

 

 

 

 

Make your own felt egg shaped gift bag or what about a fabric bunny basket?

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Make your own chocolate Easter treats!

We have Easter molds and chocolate buttons (white, milk or dark depending on your preference) ready to be melted into your own handmade Easter treats.  And if you want to try your hand at making your own chocolates from scratch, we have those ingredients on hand too.

90-2130 Easter Mint Assort 90-2353 Cracked Egg

 Dark chocolate recipe:

Makes approximately 200 grams

  • 100g cacao butter (also called cocoa butter)

  • 6 tablespoons cocoa/cacao powder

  • 1-2 tablespoons icing sugar

  • 1/4 cup almonds or 1 Tbsp chia seeds (optional)

 

 

Step 1: Melt cacao butter in a double boiler

Step 2: Mix melted butter with sifted cacao powder and icing sugar, incorporating other fillings if used.  Place in mold and allow to set in the fridge. Done!  Plus it is dairy free (making it vegan) and gluten free chocolate!

 

If you want to go a bit fancier you could always give a complete Chocolate Making Kit

Perfect for making Easter and other treats all year round.

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So while all the rest are cleaning up the commercialised rubbish, you can sit back and indulge in a heart felt and personal Easter celebration befitting the spirit of this time of year.


5 Easy Tips to Motivate Eco Change in Others

How do you make others change their ways to less wasteful living?

The simple answer is: You can’t.

You can’t make others change their ways.  You can encourage, guide, support, educate but you can’t force sustainable change on others.

We all come to these ideas with our own baggage of previous experiences, beliefs, levels and sources of knowledge, priorities and capabilities.  We all have our ways of doing things and habits that are more or less difficult to change.  Some of us are just thinking about things, some are preparing themselves for change, others are making changes slow and steady or all at once, and yet others are maintaining their momentum.  You must always be respectful of where people are.

However….

There are things that you can do to motivate others to get on board with a life with less waste.

5 Easy Tips to Motivate Change:

  1. Be a good role model – seeing you make waste less living look as enjoyable and satisfying as it is will intrigue others to find out more!
  2. Don’t give detailed explanations of why you do what you do, but feel free to give a quick statement if someone is curious.  “I’m trying to reduce my waste” is enough for now, you will be asked for more if the person is contemplating the issue.
  3. Make it as easy as possible for others to make the change – have the shopping bags readily available, send them to the shops with one container to be refilled by a retailer you know will guide them through, or have containers for leftovers ready to go (hide the cling wrap!).
  4. Just try addressing one source of waste at a time so that the change doesn’t feel onerous.  Maybe it is taking a reusable drink bottle rather than buying bottled drinks.  Maybe it is making packed lunches using containers rather than cling wrap.  Maybe it is remembering the shopping bags when you are out and about. One change at a time until it becomes a habit.
  5. Always be supportive of any attempts in the right direction.  We all want to feel good about ourselves.  Berating someone when they make mistakes will likely demotivate them so stick with the positive reinforcement and be grateful for whatever change they are trying to make for the better.