Reduce, Reuse & Recycle

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At Thrive one of our greatest beliefs is to impart knowledge to our patients not just how to optimally nurture themselves, but how to in turn nurture our precious planet. After all the waste and looting we have seen in South Africa over the past month, now is more an important time that any to refocus our priorities once more and look inwards – to ourselves and the impact of what we leave behind.

As the world has shifted its focus from an industrial revolution to preventing and cleaning the pollution of our planet, recycling has been the magic word. In school and at work, we are encouraged to choose the bin for papers and bottles, and we bring cans back to the shops. But, is this enough? The short answer: no. A measly 9% of plastics actually get recycled. South Africans need to shift their focus once again to the most important word in the “reduce, reuse, recycle” mantra — Reduce!

To start, pretend like this is the only country we’ll ever have to live on, raise our families on, grow our food on, build our homes on, and take holidays on. As the population continues to grow, and the amount of waste continues to grow, and the amount of miscellaneous “things” continue to grow, we must remember that the Earth will not grow. It’s our responsibility to take care of our own homes. We don’t let our living rooms fill with rubbish .We don’t leave plastic bags in our fish tanks. We must also treat the Earth like home.

Although there are many important and impactful contaminants and waste products covering the landscape, perhaps the most daunting is plastic, specifically single-use plastic.

Stop using single-use plastics, like grocery bags, water bottles, plastic cutlery, and straws. Start using reusable products whenever you can, like real dishware and silverware at work, reusable Tupperware and lunch bags, reusable coffee mugs and water bottles, and cloth shopping bags. Instead of clingfilm, choose to wrap your food in sustainable beeswax fabrics. Use cloth nappies and menstrual cups instead of disposables, and cloth liners instead of incontinence disposables.

Choose to be sustainable. Shop at local shops, support local suppliers, find farmer’s markets, compost your food scraps, and say no to buying individually-wrapped goods, especially when unnecessary (ie – bananas).

Yes, it’s true! There is a lot more to recycling when it comes to the popular phrase “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle.” While these are all good things to practice, there’s even more ways we can help. I always say to my customers that recycling should be the very last option! Often times, recycling will be people’s first thought. While it’s a wonderful idea to incorporate recycling into our daily lives, it is not the only option!

I’d like to introduce a few more holistic R’s to consider when thinking about our footprint on the earth:

Rethink: This is referring to thinking about what you have and if you need it.  It’s all about thinking about how much waste you produce and rethinking the process to eliminate some of this waste. Start small, and make each step sustainable and achievable until it becomes habit.

Refuse: This is refusing certain plastics and waste such as single use straws. You can use other types of straws such as metal or paper, or not use any type of straw and drink straight from the glass.

Reduce: This is normally the first step in the minds of others. Reducing equates to using a smaller quantity or amount of something. By being more mindful and purposeful about your spending, not only does it bring you more joy but it also vastly impacts waste production. That’s why at Thrive it is so important to us to marry ourselves with local brands that promise quality and sustainability, so that when you shop with us, you have that peace that your money is being spent wisely.

Reuse: Reusing is just that. It is reusing something over and over again. Find what works for you, I like to keep cloth bags in the boot of my car for whenever I go shopping. I cut the top of 2l milk jugs, pierce a hole in the bottom and it makes for perfect slipping for plants in my garden.

Rot: This is dealing with food waste. Composting your food is a great way to give back to the environment. When you put food in the landfill, it doesn’t have a chance to decompose. There are plenty of simple composting options as well that can work for most people. Come and speak to us about the Bokashi system we recommend in store.

Repair: Another R is repair. Fixing things you already have is a great way to reduce our waste. It is very easy to fall into the pit of buying something new before we even try to fix it. Fixing before we replace can help reduce our waste, and promote local industry.

Refurbish: Refurbish goes well with repair. Instead of going to buy something new, take a look around your home to see what you already have. Some things may just need a little TLC and will seem brand new! I know I share a love for chalk paint and a sander with many of my patients!

Repurpose: Repurpose is another good one to think about what you already own. Maybe something isn’t working out for what its original intention was, but you can get creative and see if you can find another purpose for it before it gets tossed. If it is still functional, consider donating to so many worthy charities in your area.

Recycle: Now after ALL of these other steps you can finally recycle! Recycling properly is also very important. It might vary from place to place of what is accepted at recycling centres. There are a lot of plastic materials that can’t be recycled in most recycling facilities. Many products will say they are recyclable, and while technically they are, only a few facilities can actually recycle them. Things like juice boxes have layers to them made up of papers, plastics, and waxes. Not many facilities can separate these layers, so they become not recyclable for the majority of places. The plastic bottles from The Juice Kitchen at our stores go towards making sustainable benches, so please recycle them in store.

Following the other R’s first is so vital in your steps towards sustainability. By the time you get to recycling, you probably won’t have much to recycle anyway

You’ve probably realised by now that recycling shouldn’t be the solution. There’s some truth to that, reusing and reducing is more efficient than recycling but, this step is just as important because there’s no 100% way to be zero waste, even though you might come close. A good recommendation for a home is to look at your rubbish, what is the main thing you keep throwing away? If it’s plastic water bottles, then you can find a reusable bottle and a water filter instead! We believe there’s a reusable replacement for almost everything, that’s why we even have sustainable cleaning bottles in recyclable plastic for your everyday cleaners.

Don’t be afraid of change, it’s good for us and our beautiful country!

At Thrive one of our greatest beliefs is to impart knowledge to our patients not just how to optimally nurture themselves, but how to in turn nurture our precious planet. After all the waste and looting we have seen in South Africa over the past month, now is more an important time that any to refocus our priorities once more and look inwards – to ourselves and the impact of what we leave behind.

As the world has shifted its focus from an industrial revolution to preventing and cleaning the pollution of our planet, recycling has been the magic word. In school and at work, we are encouraged to choose the bin for papers and bottles, and we bring cans back to the shops. But, is this enough? The short answer: no. A measly 9% of plastics actually get recycled. South Africans need to shift their focus once again to the most important word in the “reduce, reuse, recycle” mantra—Reduce!

To start, pretend like this is the only country we’ll ever have to live on, raise our families on, grow our food on, build our homes on, and take holidays on. As the population continues to grow, and the amount of waste continues to grow, and the amount of miscellaneous “things” continue to grow, we must remember that the Earth will not grow. It’s our responsibility to take care of our own homes. We don’t let our living rooms fill with rubbish .We don’t leave plastic bags in our fish tanks. We must also treat the Earth like home.

Although there are many important and impactful contaminants and waste products covering the landscape, perhaps the most daunting is plastic, specifically single-use plastic.

Stop using single-use plastics, like grocery bags, water bottles, plastic cutlery, and straws. Start using reusable products whenever you can, like real dishware and silverware at work, reusable Tupperware and lunch bags, reusable coffee mugs and water bottles, and cloth shopping bags. Instead of clingfilm, choose to wrap your food in sustainable beeswax fabrics. Use cloth nappies and menstrual cups instead of disposables, and cloth liners instead of incontinence disposables.

Choose to be sustainable. Shop at local shops, support local suppliers, find farmer’s markets, compost your food scraps, and say no to buying individually-wrapped goods, especially when unnecessary (ie – bananas).

Yes, it’s true! There is a lot more to recycling when it comes to the popular phrase “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle.” While these are all good things to practice, there’s even more ways we can help. I always say to my customers that recycling should be the very last option! Often times, recycling will be people’s first thought. While it’s a wonderful idea to incorporate recycling into our daily lives, it is not the only option!

I’d like to introduce a few more holistic R’s to consider when thinking about our footprint on the earth:

Rethink: This is referring to thinking about what you have and if you need it.  It’s all about thinking about how much waste you produce and rethinking the process to eliminate some of this waste. Start small, and make each step sustainable and achievable until it becomes habit.

Refuse: This is refusing certain plastics and waste such as single use straws. You can use other types of straws such as metal or paper, or not use any type of straw and drink straight from the glass.

Reduce: This is normally the first step in the minds of others. Reducing equates to using a smaller quantity or amount of something. By being more mindful and purposeful about your spending, not only does it bring you more joy but it also vastly impacts waste production. That’s why at Thrive it is so important to us to marry ourselves with local brands that promise quality and sustainability, so that when you shop with us, you have that peace that your money is being spent wisely.

Reuse: Reusing is just that. It is reusing something over and over again. Find what works for you, I like to keep cloth bags in the boot of my car for whenever I go shopping. I cut the top of 2l milk jugs, pierce a hole in the bottom and it makes for perfect slipping for plants in my garden.

Rot: This is dealing with food waste. Composting your food is a great way to give back to the environment. When you put food in the landfill, it doesn’t have a chance to decompose. There are plenty of simple composting options as well that can work for most people. Come and speak to us about the Bokashi system we recommend in store.

Repair: Another R is repair. Fixing things you already have is a great way to reduce our waste. It is very easy to fall into the pit of buying something new before we even try to fix it. Fixing before we replace can help reduce our waste, and promote local industry.

Refurbish: Refurbish goes well with repair. Instead of going to buy something new, take a look around your home to see what you already have. Some things may just need a little TLC and will seem brand new! I know I share a love for chalk paint and a sander with many of my patients!

Repurpose: Repurpose is another good one to think about what you already own. Maybe something isn’t working out for what its original intention was, but you can get creative and see if you can find another purpose for it before it gets tossed. If it is still functional, consider donating to so many worthy charities in your area.

Recycle: Now after ALL of these other steps you can finally recycle! Recycling properly is also very important. It might vary from place to place of what is accepted at recycling centres. There are a lot of plastic materials that can’t be recycled in most recycling facilities. Many products will say they are recyclable, and while technically they are, only a few facilities can actually recycle them. Things like juice boxes have layers to them made up of papers, plastics, and waxes. Not many facilities can separate these layers, so they become not recyclable for the majority of places. The plastic bottles from The Juice Kitchen at our stores go towards making sustainable benches, so please recycle them in store.

Following the other R’s first is so vital in your steps towards sustainability. By the time you get to recycling, you probably won’t have much to recycle anyway

You’ve probably realised by now that recycling shouldn’t be the solution. There’s some truth to that, reusing and reducing is more efficient than recycling but, this step is just as important because there’s no 100% way to be zero waste, even though you might come close. A good recommendation for a home is to look at your rubbish, what is the main thing you keep throwing away? If it’s plastic water bottles, then you can find a reusable bottle and a water filter instead! We believe there’s a reusable replacement for almost everything, that’s why we even have sustainable cleaning bottles in recyclable plastic for your everyday cleaners.

Don’t be afraid of change, it’s good for us and our beautiful country!

BY: Kim Germiquet – Responsible Pharmacist & Thrive Hilton Manager

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