Reduce your waste while you're out

Photo shows lunchbox filled with salad and a metal fork resting on top of it.

Successfully reducing waste means limiting the amount of rubbish we create and then have to dispose of, but this can be especially tricky when we're out and about. When thinking about how you can continue your sustainability journey throughout the day, it's important to remember the fundamentals – reduce, reuse, recycle.

The humble lunchbox can be a powerful weapon in your waste-reducing arsenal.

Reduce single-use items

When we're away from home it's easier to reach for quick and convenient options, and this is especially true when it comes to our food choices. Unfortunately, quick and convenient often means more packaging and therefore more waste.

Instead of hitting the takeaways or the corner shop, try packing a lunch or just some snacks to see you through. Go for options that don't already come packaged like fruits, vegetables or nuts, that you can put into containers you already have.

If you do need to get lunch on the go, still BYO a container – most places like sushi or salad bars will happily use yours. Say 'no thanks' to the plastic straw as well.

Reuse what we already have

If you're struggling to reduce waste when you're not at home the next best option is to reuse. We've already mentioned ways to reuse containers, water bottles and coffee mugs, but there are a ton of cool ways to reuse items in your day to day.

We did away with the supermarket plastic bag years ago (thank goodness!) but its reusable cousin can come in handy for a lot more than just the groceries. Try keeping one in your handbag or your car, you'll be surprised how often you use it in your day. Plus, you'll avoid getting caught with your hands full.

Apply the same principle to drinks and try carrying a water bottle to avoid buying nasty plastic bottles. Cafes will happily accept your reusable coffee mug and you can bring a fork from home to avoid having to use a throwaway plastic one.

Even if you can only reuse something a few times, it's still better than sending it straight to landfill.

Recycle wherever possible

We know that reducing and reusing aren't always achievable, and sometimes we need to buy products that we'd normally try to avoid. In this case, try opting for recyclable products. Paper or cardboard products like straws or plates are easily recycled, as are green, clear and brown glass bottles and jars.

Plastic can also be recycled but make sure to check which numbers we can collect in Palmy (1, 2 and 5).

Many businesses now have recycling bins but not always, so we recommend holding on to any recyclables that you can't get rid of immediately so you can chuck them in your recycling bin at home. Remember – from small things, big things grow.

If you're attending an event on Council land, look out for our brightly coloured bins that tell you what goes where.