No more delivery food was one of the first changes I committed to when I decided to embark on this new journey towards producing less trash. Then we ran out of gas credit – it was raining, I have three young kids, it was school holidays, and it was dinnertime. A week later I went away for the day and came home to Dad’s home cooked meal in the shape of plastic bags and takeout containers.
Another day the air was so beautiful, I couldn’t bear the thought of taking the kids inside after school to cook dinner, so it was Waimai to the rescue.
According to data gathered about China’s biggest online delivery apps, there are a total of 7 million orders for takeaways on these apps every day in China, and now these big delivery platforms currently have a lawsuit against them for the environmental damage resulting from the single-use items they supply.
7 million orders x 0.06m2 (average size of plastic bag) = 420,000m2
420,000m2 / 7,140m2 = 59 football pitches of plastic bag trash each day
from just takeaways alone!
That doesn’t include all the plastic containers, which are made from such low quality plastic that they cannot be recycled. So what can we do to make our lives easier so we aren’t so reliant on delivery food?
- Weekly menu planner – if you know what you are cooking, and you have the ingredients, then it’s easy. If I go a step further and put my meal planner on the wall, then when I tell my children that it’s Dad’s turn to cook, they might stop asking ‘Dad, what are you ordering for dinner?’
- Keep your meals simple – so that if you are super tired one night, you can cook something easy without feeling stressed.
- Be okay with feeding your kids scrambled eggs or quick oats for dinner occasionally. If they are mostly eating well they will not suffer from nutritional deficiency. And if your partner comes home from work complaining, just lift an eyebrow and give them the ‘look’.
- Get an ayi – we don’t have one, but this is the perfect solution: someone else to cook AND clean up.
- Eat out – go to the food instead of the food coming to you. Find a cheap local hangout you can frequent and read these tips before you go.
- Just order less. If you order every week, try ordering every two weeks. Challenge yourself!
Photos: Rebecca Archer