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There are a number of easy steps we can all take when carrying out our weekly shop into order to save money and reduce waste.
Choose recycled products
If more people make a conscious effort to support recycling activity by purchasing products made from recycled material it will help set-up strong markets for materials collected in your local recycling schemes and encourage retail stores to stock more recycled products. So buy recycled and close the recycling loop!
Avoid buying items single use items
Products that are used once and then thrown away cost more in the long term and create more waste. Try to buy rechargeable batteries and reusable cups, for example, rather than their disposable alternatives.
Buy only what you need
When you are thinking of buying something new, ask yourself if you really genuinely need it. The best way to reduce waste is not to produce it in the first place, so try to resist the urge to go shopping when you don't actually need anything.
Avoid buying bottled water
Rather than always having to buy an expensive bottle of water when you get thirsty, why not carry a bottle around with you that you can fill up from the tap? This will reduce your waste and save you money.
Use reusable shopping bags
Plastic carrier bags are very wasteful, as they are normally used just once before being thrown away. Stronger reusable bags can be bought from many supermarkets and can be used again and again for your shopping. When they finally wear out the supermarkets will replace them for free. Cloth and jute bags are also available from many charities, shops and websites.
Buy in bulk
Many food items can be bought in small or large packets. If you choose the larger ones, you will save money and end up using less packaging than buying two of the smaller ones.
Choose food with less packaging
Some food items come wrapped up in a lot of packaging, and these materials are often not able to be recycled. When you are out shopping, try to choose those items that use less packaging, and steer away from unnecessary 'gift' packaging.