Last week I vowed to cut my single-use plastic consumption 3:1 for the summer. I started off great; I remembered my grocery bags when I went shopping. I even used my new cloth produce bags. I was pleasantly surprised by the produce bags. Fiddleheads tend to be very wet, and I was sure I’d end up with a mess in my fridge. It was actually the complete opposite: I think the cloth let them breathe and there was no residue in the produce drawer.


As the week went on, the challenges started arising. I was away for a meeting that went through lunch. Drive thru seemed the quickest and easiest way to get rid of my “h-anger” but I started feeling some trepidation: I wanted to try the new fish and chips, but I didn’t have real silverware packed (mental note: I need a serious purse reorganization). I went for it anyway and to my confusion and somewhat relief, there was no plastic cutlery in the bag. the fish was small enough to pick and dip. Not the most elegant, but it was drive thru fare.


Things really went off the rails Thursday. I picked up breakfast burgers for the office and while I was chatting, they appeared all packed in a plastic bag. It didn’t even occur to me to take in a reusable bag. I ended up picking up lunch as well. I remembered to ask for no bag, but when I opened the container I realized I forgot to ask for no cutlery (again).


So the week that was:

  • two cloth produce bags
  • four grocery bags
  • no cutlery at McDonalds
  • no plastic water bottle


  • single use plastic bag
  • plastic cutlery for lunch


So, I guess I’m ahead 2:1. Better than I thought and a good learning curve for week one.


*I’m not counting the refillable coffee cup I carry daily. I’m hoping that will offset things like the plastic containter of tartar sauce and the styrofoam soup bowl that I don’t have a feasible way to avoid using at this point.

** I’m not sure the best way to “score” this experiment. At this point I’m doing a simple count but I may change if a better solution presents itself.

3 replies on “This is Harder Than I Thought

  1. Great challenge and kudos for the efforts and the results. I always carry a small reusable bag that fits in a small pocket in my bag – so handy. In France now, plastic is banned almost everywhere, or you have to pay for it. It does help bring the consumption level down.

    Liked by 1 person

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