There’s a plastic-free movement going on— you’ve probably seen and heard of the plastic straw bans, plastic bag bans, and more. People are waking up to the realities of the impact of plastic on our health and the health of the planet. It’s pretty alarming, and it’s why Nummy is 100% plastic-free in our product lines. We strongly believe that removing single-use plastics from our daily life can be an easy move we all can do to benefit the planet long-term. Here are the top reasons to avoid plastic.
Plastic is bad for your health
You’ve probably seen the headlines about how detrimental plastic is to the planet, but did you know that plastic is also bad for your health? Research shows that your plastic container could be leeching toxins into the food or drink you’re consuming These toxins are considered “endocrine disruptors”— meaning they can be throwing your hormones out of whack, and even affecting fertility and pregnancy. BPA is the most commonly known endocrine disruptor, but others may be lurking in your water bottle even if it’s BPA free, like BPS, BPF, or a variety of other toxins.
Heating plastic products is especially problematic—leaving a plastic water bottle in your car or throwing some leftovers in a plastic container into the microwave accelerates the release of the toxins. While exposure to these toxins once in a while may not be so bad, reheating your lunch (or your kid’s lunch!) in or on plastic daily could have significant long-term health effects.
As a company that produces products for children, we are especially careful about avoiding anything that could harm. This is a big part of the reason that Nummy Bowls were designed with platinum cured silicone. We avoid these hazardous toxins altogether by avoiding plastic in our supply chain and only making our products with eco-friendly, sustainable and reusable materials.
Plastic is bad for the environment
We all know by now that plastic has a wide range of negative consequences for the environment, but did you know that all the plastic ever created still exists today in some form? Whether it's in the ocean, the landfill, still in use, or has been recycled into something new, it is still in existence. On top of that, only about 10% of the plastic thrown in the recycling bin ever even gets recycled. So while we may feel like we’re doing our part by properly putting our plastic in the recycling bin, it likely isn’t ending up as a new product. Even if it is, as plastic is recycled, it degrades in quality, meaning after recycling it once or twice, it most often cannot be recycled again and will need to be thrown away.
We also know that plastic ends up in our oceans, which has had devastating consequences for our aquatic life. According to Ocean Conservatory, "Plastic has been found in more than 60% of all seabirds and in 100% of sea turtles species, that mistake plastic for food.” The amount of plastic circulating in our oceans is alarming (8 million metric tons per year, according to Ocean Conservatory), which also leads back to health concerns— and if you are eating fish, you may even be consuming plastic particles that the fish has consumed.
Microplastics compound both the health and environmental impacts
If we haven’t alarmed you too much yet, there’s one last factor to discuss here— microplastics. These pesky tiny particles of plastic end up everywhere— literally. In our oceans, air, food, and more. This impedes our health and the health of the planet. While we are encouraged that brands are using recycled water bottles, for example, to make clothing, washing those clothes still leeches microparticles of plastic into our waterways.
So what can you do?
We’re not here to just share bad news-- let’s talk about what can be done! Here are a few really easy things you can do every day to start being plastic-free:
- Avoid plastic as much as possible as per the consequences outlined above.
- Buy food in the bulk section, or opt for non-plastic options for anything you are buying such as silicone, glass, stainless steel, and other non-toxic materials.
- Re-use the plastic you already have in your life, aim to reuse it as much as possible! Since plastic is recycled at such low rates, it’s better to continue to reuse it (best for non-food and drink purposes) than to toss it in the recycling bin.
- Ask for a change - If there’s a product you love that comes in plastic, you can ask the brand to move from plastic packaging— consumer demand can make a big difference.
And finally, share what you’re learning with friends so they can avoid plastic too. We can’t do any of this alone, so spread the word. The world is moving away from plastic, and we’re here for it. We hope you’ll join us in this mission!