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Shopping initiative targets wasteful packaging

November 12, 2004

Smart shopping initiative targets wasteful packaging

Saving the planet starts at home - and at the supermarket.

Changing people's buying habits is the aim of North Shore City's Smart Shopping courses - part of its 'WasteWise' waste reduction programme.

The course aims to educate people to buy environmentally friendly products with low-waste packaging. It is the second time it has been run, following a successful launch last year.

What is purchased, and how much, can make a significant difference to the impact each household has on the environment, says North Shore City waste minimisation team leader, Danielle Kennedy.

"The council's kerbside recycling service diverts from landfill more than 16,000 tonnes of packaging each year, in the form of bottles and containers - but there is still a further 15 - 20 per cent of packaging in the average household rubbish bag which could be reduced by purchasing decisions," she says.

Smart shopping identifies the reasons to change buying habits and the many alternatives available. It also looks at the links between shopping and consumer health, and the exploitation of workers in developing countries.

The free, two-and-a-half-hour course is being run in conjunction with the Kaipatiki Project, and will take place at the organisation's headquarters in Birkdale, on Saturday, December 4, from 10am to 1.30pm. To enrol, residents should ring the Kaipatiki Project on 482 1172. Participants are asked to bring lunch.

Glenfield resident Nola Hughes attended last year's course because she wanted to know more about what she could do to help the environment.

"We already had a compost bin and a worm farm at home - we like to do all we can, and the course sounded interesting," says Mrs Hughes.

She says the information provided has been put to good use, and that she would recommend it to other residents.

"I take much more care in what I buy, and put out on rubbish day. This course should be compulsory!"

For more information about Smart Shopping, residents should contact the Kaipatiki Project, or phone North Shore City Actionline on 486 8600.


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