Author Archives: Pete

Morrisons Chicken

Morrisons Flame-Grilled Chicken Mini Fillets

I’ve come to expect this from supermarkets, those lovely businesses that took over from local butchers and green grocers by offering cheaper products all in once place, the one catch is those products we subject to the pressures of commercialisation to make the products as cheap as possible, shipped around from 4-5 different countries, with all sorts of additives and substitutes added to make them cheaper, all the while squeezing their suppliers to the limit to give themselves a bigger profit margin… anyway, that’s another rant, perhaps I should make a website about it, or not. Let’s just talk about packaging for now!

Morrisons have done a fine job presenting this box of air with some free little bits of chicken as a little bonus to all that air you just bought. I appreciate meat isn’t easy to package without being wasteful (well you could always just buy it without the packets from your local butcher right?), but is it really necessary to make the plastic bigger to con your customers into thinking there is more chicken there? I know Morrisons love to confuse customers with confusing prices but should they really do it at a cost to the environment? JUST HAVE A SMALLER PACKET! You know, one to match the actual size of the product. It can’t even be good for the product to be rattling around in a larger container  anyway.

Oh and the fact the plastic is black doesn’t help with recycling, it makes it hard for optical sorting systems to correctly identify it. I will ask Morrisons though as I’m a fair person :-)

Just T shirts

Calvin Klein T shirts

OK, so you know when you get a shirt, you either see them on hangers, so you can see then properly, feel the material, get an idea of the fit, and even try them on, OR you get those stupid annoying shirts in packets with all those extra random bits of card, plastic and even metal clips to ensure the shirt is folded up to look nice while it’s IN A PACKET. Well you know what, Calvin Klein wanted to take this concept even further as they are a company who likes to be on the edge, always pushing the boundaries of innovation so they thought it would be a great idea to introduce this overpackaged shirt concept to T shirts as well. It’s worked out really well, managing to put the t shirts into a plastic box, with a plastic bag, plastic clips and some cardboard.

Allergan Eye Drops

Allergan Eye Drops

Thanks to Candice D’Silva who sent this picture. One small vial of treatment for your eyes, one massive packet for the landfill. You normally get a little plastic bottle in a small box just big enough for it to fit in (which in truth isn’t really essential) but Allergan have gone the whole hog and packaged their eyedrops up a nice big plastic box for it to rattle around in, complete with a foil tear off lid and a nice big bit of plastic for an extra lid. Then of course you need to put this into another box just for the craic.

Quorn Peppered Steak Packaging

Quorn Peppered Steaks

Quorn meat free steak

I thought it was a ‘missteak’…

When I first slid the cardboard sleeve off I thought this must have been some kind of ‘miss-steak’… (sorry, I couldn’t resist the pun), had they forgotten the other two steaks? Two packed neatly onto one half of the box with a strange fake steak shaped empty space on the other side. Upon further investigation it did indeed say it was two steaks on the packet but for some reason Quorn thought it would be better to make packaging literally twice the necessary size.

Over packaged Quorn Steak

Space for two more??

The strange thing with this is that I’d reckon a higher percentage of vegans/vegetarian (I don’t think this is actually vegan) would be bothered about wasteful packaging. Eating less meat could potentially reduce emissions, I’m not trying to tell you not to eat meat or anything, just that this is the reason or one of the reasons people choose not to eat meat so maybe, just maybe they care about the environment and don’t want to have twice the amount of plastic packaging needed. Is this just a ploy to make the product look more attractive and bigger??

the plastic challenge

Be part of the Plastic Challenge!

the plastic challengeThe Marine Conservation Society (MCS) are challenging you to give up plastic this month, with the plastic challenge! How long can you go? A day, a week or a month?? It may be harder than you think, going completely plastic free can be a real challenge with the amount of products that contain plastic and come in plastic packaging. It is possible, just have a look at Treading My Own Path for some inspiration on how to de-clutter your life and really go plastic free!

Plastic takes a long, long time to go away, and doesn’t truly degrade, at best it just breaks down into smaller particles but this in itself may be even worse. Up to 20 million tons of plastic end up in the oceans every single year, sealife such as dolphins, seals, turtles and orca will eat plastic mistaking it for real food. Really nasty toxins can stick to plastics and end up being consumed by fish, thus entering it into the food chain, these fish can end up being eaten by other fish, even polar bears. But it doesn’t end there, microplastics have been found in mussels, oyster and sea scallops, you can guess where they could end up after that if you eat seafood… yep, you and me. So that plastic wrapping you chucked away from your fancy electric toothbrush ended up in the sea, was eaten marine life, passed through some fish, maybe some birds and perhaps those tasty mussels you tucked into the other night, so yep it finally can end up in you.

Effects of plastic in the oceanThis website certainly isn’t going to change the world but I’d like to try and make more people aware of this, plastic is a new invention (before you say it’s been around for over 100 years, yes that IS new, the Earth is 4 billion years old) yet the world is quickly filling up with it. If you don’t believe me take a look around you, you’ll see it everywhere, if you are reading this on a phone or tablet it’s in your hands now, or if you are on a computer just look at your mouse, keyboard, screen. It’s on you right now, your clothes probably contain it and will most likely have been packaged in it. Whilst it has been a very useful invention it has been too successful or it’s own good, the ability to make anything in any shape with plastic has opened up so many possibilities but it has come at a price with is only going to get worse. The problem now is nothing really compared to what it will be like in 100 years if we don’t change our ways, it’s not like we can just blast it off into space (hang on a minute, maybe… no that’s a terrible idea!).

So if you’d like to help raise awareness and raise money for the Marine Conservation Society, share some ideas on how to cut your plastic usage  or just read more visit MCS.

You can register for the challenge here: Plastic challenge | Marine Conservation Society

All that just for one little cable... cable

I know things need to be protected in the post but this is just stupid. If you squint you might just be able to see a small DisplayPort to VGA cable, that is my order, yep that’s it! When the package arrived at the office I had no idea it would be this cable, I only ordered the day before so all credit for quick delivery but zero credit for wasteful packaging. The tiny (and fairly durable might I add) came in a little plastic bag, wrapped in a crazy amount of bubble wrap, with a plastic outside packet. I could probably drop the cable from a two-storey house onto concrete and it would still work. Perhaps give it a little bit of padding but not all this. I wonder how much money Scan could save if they didn’t package their parcels like this, bubble wrap isn’t cheap when you send out thousands of parcels so they are only shooting themselves in the foot. I will reuse the bubble wrap but in the end it will eventually just end up in the bin, or the sea…

You could drop that out of a plane and it would survive!

You could drop that out of a plane and it would survive!