Plastic is destroying our Planet. It is polluting our oceans and poisoning our bodies, as well as the Earth we rely on.
Today, we are tipping our hats to Asian supermarkets who are turning back the clock and using leaves instead of plastic to package fresh produce.
While many people believe that recycling will solve the problem – it absolutely will not. China has stopped buying America’s recycling and the majority of recycled goods end up in landfills.
On average, Americans generate 258 million tons of solid waste, 53% of which ends up in landfills while 35% is recycled and 13% is combusted for energy production. Add that to all of the trash produced around the world and we have a serious problem on our hands.
Trash remains in landfills for thousands of years, producing toxic gases, leaching toxins into ground soil, and killing innocent creatures. Plus, much of it ends up in our oceans, lining the guts of sea creatures and marine birds.
Some of the worst culprits of all are the plastic bags we use for a few seconds to store fresh produce before throwing them away to pollute the planet for 1,000+ years.
To help combat the issue, supermarkets in Asia are starting to use leaves instead of plastic to package their vegetables.
This cost-effective solution greatly reduces the amount of plastic used on a regular basis.
China has recently stopped buying trash from other countries, instead they are focused on recycling their own abundance of waste.
Prior to this decision, China took in around 30% of the world’s waste. As a result, it became a popular belief that China was responsible for producing the majority of the world’s waste.
Asian countries like Vietnam and Thailand are now invested in finding innovative ways to avoid using plastic – and leaves are the perfect example of this ground-breaking business idea.
Perfect Homes Chiangmai’s post about using leaves instead of plastic went viral when it was shared via Facebook.
One of their team members was at a supermarket called Rimping Supermarket when they noticed the creative way the store was packaging fresh produce. They busted out their iPhone and started taking photos of the leaf-wrapped produce.
People from all around the world fell in love with the idea and started sharing it like crazy.
“We just popped in to get a few items while we were waiting to sign some contracts with our lawyer, who was delayed, so we were not even meant to be there at that time. When I noticed the veg wrapped in banana leaves and simply liked the idea ad showed my wife who picked a few up to buy.
I thought I would take a few pictures and just post to the page, and that was it,” explained a team member from Perfect Homes Chiangmai in an interview with Bored Panda.
The post has been viewed over 3.5 million times and shared over 17 thousand times. This is an idea that so many supermarkets can implement on their own shelves.
“I had no idea it was going to go viral, I was shocked when it hit 20 shares. It was not until the morning while I was in the gym that I started to realised what was happening, I pointed out to Stig my friend that it had now something like a thousand shares ad that this was crazy. Once we had finished the session an hour later it had nearly doubled that is when it really started to go off!”
Not everything in the supermarket photographed in this post is completely plastic free… yet. The store has commented that they are in the process of shifting away from plastic 100%.
Many products come to the market pre-packaged in plastic since it is the cheapest and easiest way to do it.
“I feel it is now up to the shoppers to show the supermarket which they prefer. Because without a doubt if every one opts for the banana leaf packaging then they will stop stocking the items in plastic and this will also drive other great ideas forward.”
Need more convincing? Every piece of plastic that has been created still exists on this Earth today. That includes every plastic bag you’ve ever used at the grocery store. Scary thought, right?
It’s time we do something to solve the problem – and the solution starts with every one of us and the choices we make.