Buy items with least amount of packaging

Its primary purpose is to protect and contain a product. It also can prevent tampering, provide information, and preserve hygienic integrity and freshness. Some packaging, however, is designed largely to enhance a product's attractiveness or prominence on the store shelf. Since packaging materials account for a large volume of the trash we generate, this provides a good opportunity for reducing waste.

When choosing between two similar products, select the one with the least unnecessary packaging.

For instance, remember that wrenches, screwdrivers, nails, and other hardware are often available in loose bins.

At the grocery store, consider whether it is necessary to purchase items such as tomatoes, garlic, and mushrooms in prepackaged containers when they can be bought unpackaged.

Recognize and support store managers when they stock products with no packaging or reduced packaging. Let clerks know when it's not necessary to double wrap a purchase.

Also, consider large or economy-sized items for household products that are used frequently, such as laundry soap, shampoo, baking soda, pet foods, and cat litter. These sizes usually have less packaging. For food items, choose the largest size that can be used before spoiling.

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