If you saw Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall’s new BBC programme War on Plastic on Monday, you’ll know that a bin lorry full of plastic is emptied into the world’s oceans every minute. And making the switch from plastic to glass is just one way we can all easily reduce our household plastic consumption.
Earlier last year Farmdrop made a commitment to dramatically reduce the amount of plastic packaging in its supply chain. Although we were doing better than most in the category, we wanted to do more. Just last month, we launched the new compostable, plastic-free bag for fruit and veg items, and that seems to have gone down really well.
And now another important breakthrough – milk in glass bottles. We’ve been talking to producers about providing a glass bottle option for some time and have finally reached an agreement with Ivy House Dairy.
Customers can now buy whole, semi-skimmed or skimmed milk in a 750ml glass bottle for all deliveries placed between Tuesday evening and Sunday morning. Unfortunately, we can’t take the glass bottles back (Ivy House are still working on that bit) but you can reuse or recycle them, just as you would with other glass bottles like wine.
Ironically, it seems we have come full circle with milk packaging. After all, the original food delivery service was the milkman or woman who delivered the white stuff to your doorstep in a recyclable glass bottle every morning. These deliveries were made on an electric milk float so great for the environment too.
And as recently as 1980, some 90 per cent of milk consumed in this country was delivered by the local milkman. However, the advent of the supermarket and its loss-leading pricing strategy made it difficult for the local and personalised milk delivery service to continue.
But while the supermarkets thought they’d found a commercial breakthrough using plastic bottles, the environmental cost of switching to plastic has until recently remained largely hidden.
In the UK, we now produce nearly 5 million tonnes of plastic waste every year; the equivalent of hundreds of billions of plastic carrier bags.
The media has done a great job exposing the harmful consequences of our addiction to plastic packaging and the message is very clear: we need to be weaned off our addiction to single-use plastic.
At Farmdrop, we know that solving any big problem like fixing the food chain or eradicating throwaway plastic involves making hundreds of small improvements. We’re still not where we need to be, but the return of the glass milk bottle is definitely another positive step forward.
Get your milk delivered in a glass bottle from Farmdrop here.