Cheese (and other items hard to come by in a Zero Waste Life.)

So since I have begun this Zero waste Journey, there are some items that I have had major trouble finding without large amounts of plastic and packaging. Here are the top items that have been hard to find, and options that I have found. I would love to hear below if you have found any other ways to get these items in your area.

  1. Cheese – Cheese has been one of the hardest things to come by when trying to reduce my waste. And I’m not even talking about particularly fancy or difficult cheese, I’m talking cheddar, parmesan, mozzarella – your basic cheese. I have tried markets, supermarkets, smaller stores, bulk stores, and it’s all in plastic. But I had a win last week. I don’t usually support major supermarkets, but my local Coles has agreed to sell me my cheese direct from the wax packaging that they get it in. YES!
  2. Asian goods – has anyone found a local grocer that has sushi seaweed, rice paper rolls and the like without wrapping, I, so far, have not. I did see some videos only to grow and produce your own, but I’m just not sure that this is going to work for me. I have had some wins with my local sushi restaurants allowing me to buy already made sushi in my own container, but that’s about it.
  3. Spaghetti (or other long pasta varieties) For the most part, I make a lot of my pasta at home, but lets face it, sometimes, there aren’t enough hours in the day to do that. Shorter varieties of pasta are easily found at bulk stores, but spaghetti, and particular wholegrain spaghetti are yet to be found in any waste free form. The closest I can get is a box of spaghetti at the supermarket – but even those have a little plastic window in the front of them (what – just in case someone doesn’t know there is pasta in there?)
  4. Yoghurt – Seems we are finding a dairy pattern here. BUT – i hear that yogurt is super easy to make. I haven’t tried it out yet, but stay tuned and watch this space, because it is one of my goals for this year – ill keep you guys posted!
  5. Grapes and Berries – So this used to be easy to find when i was a kid. Yes – there were always plastic bags to put your grapes and berries in, but they were not pre packed in KG size bags ready to grab and go. So far, in the last few months, i have been able to find strawberries and grapes at a few farmers markets, but other than that, we simply haven’t been able to buy them. I have heard that some farmers markets will allow you to bring the plastic tub back and they will reuse them. My advice – chat to the people in your farmers market, your local stores and your community – see what you can make happen!

I would love to hear from you – what do you have trouble buying without packaging, and what unique solutions have you found?

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