Purchasing Decisions

  • Products that remain useful reduce the need to purchase new products. 
  • It may be worth paying a little more once rather than having to repurchase products, reducing the need to produce more products.
  • Energy efficient appliances will save you operational costs in the long run.


  • When you are shopping for groceries or other products make your selections based on the quantity of packaging used (less is definitely better) – not only on price or temptation.
  • When there is a lot of extra packaging you are invariably paying more for the product because you’re paying for the packaging.
  • The excess packaging gets thrown away and has no real use.
  • Buy products like cleaning agents in bulk size. See below.
  • Buy concentrated products – like juices or cleaning products. This reduces the amount of packaging used.
  • Buy loose items instead of overly packaged fruit and vegetables.

Shopping Bags

  • Reduce your consumption of plastic shopping bags by reusing those you already have. See Reuse
  • Purchase reusable fabric bags, so that you don’t have to buy plastic ones.
  • Use your own bags or baskets for your shopping.
  • When the shop teller asks if you want bags – say” No thanks I’ve brought my own.”
  • Once you’ve unpacked your shopping put the bags back into your car or hand bag. 
  • When buying loose fruit or vegetable items at the supermarket, get the items weighed without putting them in the bag, receive the pricing label and then put them in one plastic bag. Put multiple labels onto one bag. This reduces the consumption of plastic bags.

Packaging Food

  • Reduce your use of plastic bags and clingwrap by reusing existing containers.
  • Make food at home and store it in reusable containers instead of buying take-aways. This saves on disposable packaging of take-aways. 

Clothing & Personal Purchases

  • Think twice before buying something. Do you need it or just want it?
  • Everything we buy has emitted emissions due to the manufacturing and transport.
  • Be a smart shopper and buy things that last.
  • Avoid buying toys that require batteries.


  • Hire goods if you don’t need them long term instead of buying, e.g. a trailer or a drill.


  • Give gift experiences instead of products that someone may not need or want. For example movie vouchers, spa treatments, extreme sports or adventure outings, sporting events or the theatre.
  • Some people have everything. Make a donation to a worthy cause in their name, such as Plant A Tree For Life!
  • Make a donation in someone’s name to an environmental or animal welfare organisation.
  • Give the gift of time – volunteer. There are so many organisations that would appreciate your time and effort.
  • Reuse gift bags. Pass them forward.
  • Buy gifts made from recycled materials.
  • Give food packages.
  • Give fruit or nuts.
  • Give speciality food items that someone wouldn’t buy for themselves (nothing environmentally unsound).