This month's challenge is to recycle tetrapaks, the laminated paper cartons used for milk, juice, soup, smoothies and all sorts of other uses. But isn't it better to avoid cartons altogether in favour of more environmentally-friendly packaging options?
In fact, although they look high-tech, tetrapaks are a very green choice. They take much less energy to produce than glass bottles or tin cans, and since they are lighter and stack more closely than bottles or cans, they also require much less energy to transport. They include less non-biodegradable material than plastic bottles, and are mostly made from renewable raw materials rather than oil-based plastic. And now that I know they can be recycled they look like a very appealing choice indeed.
For example, you may have heard other greenies railing against the growing popularity of bottled water, because of the packaging waste it produces. But an innovative company in Sussex called Aquapax have begun packaging mineral water in tetrapaks instead of plastic bottles. I'll always choose tap water instead wherever that's an option, which is most places I ever go. But sometimes bottled (or at least packaged) water is a good choice, and water in cartons is a better choice than water in bottles, especially if you recycle the carton.
Are you ready to take this month's challenge to recycle your cartons? Don't forget to vote in the poll in the right-hand sidebar.