Thursday, February 3, 2011


Picture courtesy of

I've come across two examples of massive waste recently that have really stuck in my mind. Just after Christmas, I went to the supermarket and saw someone clearing the shelves of "old" bread to make way for the new. Now this individual was hurling the bread onto the floor and kicking it out of the way. Damaging the bread - pure and simple. When I asked the checkout operator where it went she said that she had no idea.

Now Woolworths at least donate all their leftover fresh food as part of their Fresh Food Rescue program. I'm hoping Coles do the same but the state this bread was in, I'm almost sure they would have binned it :-(

The second example comes from another big corporate. Here the staff are required to wear a uniform which is compulsorily updated with a new uniform every year. Individual staff are prohibited from donating the old (and I use that word loosely) uniforms because they have logos on them. Some senior management staff in the past have donated some uniforms to homeless shelters as this was ok, but it had been done by an individual management member. So does the head office collect these excess uniforms every year and donate them en masse to homeless shelters around Australia? In one word - No.

For some reason, these two examples seem to rattle around in my brain a lot at the moment. Both seem so wasteful and both seem to have fairly straight forward answers to such waste.

Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It's not.
- The Lorax by Dr Suess

So I wrote to both companies asking them what their company policies are in regards to these waste areas and if they feel their response to it will change in the future.

Hopefully I can either jolt just one person to think outside the square, be a blinding flash of the obvious or join in an unknown chorus of complaints / questioning from the public. My aim this year is to speak up more when I see things that could be made more green / sustainable.   

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