A zero-waste advocate in Saskatoon is asking people to do a little bit more in their everyday life to help reduce waste.
In 2015, Meg Dorwart decided to try a waste-free challenge. Little did she know at the time that the month-long challenge would turn into her everyday lifestyle.
With a combination of research and trial and error, Dorwart has swapped out plastic containers for mason jars, facial products are shipped in envelopes, and shampoo isn’t on her grocery list anymore.
“I wash my hair with eggs,” Dorwart said with a laugh.
“I went to the hairdresser after I did it for the first time just to make sure I wasn’t ruining my hair and they kind of told me that a lot of really professional brands try to mimic what the egg does because it binds to the oil and washes off really easily.”
According to Zero Waste Canada, an average person in Canada uses 100 kilograms of plastic each year, and 10 to 20 million tonnes of that plastic ends up in the ocean.
Grocery stores, such as Bulk Basket, have also made the transition more attainable and easier for zero-waste participants in the city.
“The main focus is like that’s why we started this store. We want our customers to be able to bring their own jars or their own bags and then fill it up and then take it home,” Bulk Basket owner Nagarajan Alagarsamy said.
The store started out with around 100 items and now has up to 450 different bulk bins. Products from toothpaste to detergent can be transferred into containers or metal bins.
For people who want to give the zero-waste lifestyle a try, Dorwart suggests starting small.
“You don’t have to be 100 per cent zero waste, I don’t really even like the term zero waste because it seems very like you’re looking for perfection,” Dorwart said.
“One of my favourite zero-waste people, she’s in California, and one of my favourite quotes from her is ‘that you are not looking for perfection. You are just looking to make better choices.’ And that’s what it’s about.”