Reduce waste top tips

To follow any changes to this service, visit the Council Service Updates page.

Our 20 top tips on how to reduce your waste:

  1. Get a home composter to divert your garden waste, fruit and vegetable peelings from landfill – visit our composting page to find out more.
  2. Shop smart! Consider the packaging that foods are contained in, For example, buy loose fruit and vegetables rather than pre-packaged ones. Compost any uncooked peeling at home. Shop in bulk to reduce packaging and is often cheaper than buying smaller amounts.
  3. Take your own shopping bags – you can re-use old plastic bags or take to some supermarkets for recycling, take ‘bags for life’ or use cloth bags.
  4. Consider buying long lasting items like washing powder, pasta, cereal and biscuits in bulk – to minimise packaging waste. Buying in bulk is also likely to save you money!
  5. Buy milk in returnable glass bottles from a milkman, rather than plastic bottles or cartons.
  6. Don’t buy disposable items such as razors and pens.
  7. Make fresh, homemade drinks in reusable, re-sealable containers, rather than buying separate cartons, cans and bottles – it will be cheaper too.
  8. For packed lunches and picnics use a reusable airtight container, rather than aluminium foil or cling film wrapping.
  9. Use rechargeable batteries. Batteries contain toxic or hazardous chemicals – the more you buy, the greater the impact on the environment.
  10. If drinking hot drink on the go buy and use a reusable cup.  An added incentive is most coffee shops offer a discounts if using these cups.
  11. To stop junk mail addressed to you, register your details free on the Mailing Preference Service website.
  12. Don’t be fooled by ‘buy one get one free’ offers on fresh fruit, meat or dairy products. You may not get round to eating them before they pass their use by date and they will end up in the bin. Visit our love food hate waste page for tips on how to get the most from the food we buy.
  13. Buy long-lasting, low energy light bulbs.
  14. Use handkerchiefs rather than throwaway tissues.
  15. Use washable cutlery, cups and plates at parties and barbeques, rather than paper plates, plastic cutlery and cups which are only used once before they are thrown away. Say no to disposable straws.
  16. Avoid using wipes and carry reusable, washable cloths.
  17. Visit your local library for newspapers and books, rather than buying them.
  18. Say no to paper bags or plastic bags in shops if you don’t need them.
  19. Rent or borrow equipment which you use infrequently. It may be possible to share items such as lawnmowers, shredders, hedge-trimmers or other equipment with your friends or neighbours.
  20. When buying electrical goods see if there are any devices on the market which use alternative power sources. For example, clockwork radios, solar calculators, manual watches all use less energy.