YOU SAID , WROTE & TWEETED
✽WINNING LETTER Plastic purge
During the December holidays, I went for a walk on an unspoiled, relatively isolated beach on the Garden Route. With only a few people strolling along the coastline with their dogs, it was easy to imagine this piece of wild, windswept coastline as it might have been 100 or even 500 years ago; beautiful and unchanged. Until I spotted the errant pieces of plastic on the shore: milk bottles, strangled plastic bags and plastic straws.
The sight depressed and infuriated me, but it really hit home when I read the article on single-use plastic in your December 2017 issue, and realised that I am just as guilty. I routinely forget my reusable shopping bag, and buy plastic bags at the supermarket. I buy bottled water, use tampons with plastic applicators etc. So I made it my New Year’s resolution to implement as many of the 22 small changes you list in the article.
Thanks for a well-researched article that made a boring, overwhelming topic accessible and informative and offered tangible steps for every person to make daily changes. It inspired me, and hopefully manufacturers and retailers will follow suit.
Ed: That story generated a huge response, and we’re delighted: the more people talk about it, the better the chance of changing behaviour. Thank you for adopting Marli’s 22 small changes – we were all inspired to do the same… As were some others (see opposite!)
An Instagram message we loved!
A recent article in FAIRLADY has set us on a course to eliminate the unnecessary use of plastic where we can. As a start we have removed straws and plastic takeaway bags. If you simply have to have a straw they will still be available to you on request, but our tasty meals will now be packaged only in recyclable brown paper bags.
Throughout this year we aim to cut out other packaging materials that can be replaced by something that’s environmentally friendly, and we hope that you’ll support us in this endeavour. Your convenience and comfort is always important to us, but we love to take care of our planet. Pronto Italian restaurant Ed: We’re delighted to hear it! Thank you, Pronto.
…and a rap over the knuckles
I was amazed at the irony of your article highlighted on the cover of the December edition, ‘Our Big Fat Single-Use Plastic Problem’.
I struggled for a good few minutes to get the thick plastic cover off your magazine – it was so well stuck together that it actually tore the back cover off the spine, spilling out the inserts and a pair of earrings, also encased in thick plastic!
Where is the sense in this? Granted, advertisers pay a lot for inserts but could we not have them fixed inside in some way or even wrap the magazine in a nice brown paper bag with the cover pics and titles printed on the front? Just a thought! Janet Friel Ed: Good point, Janet, and one that worries us all the time. Brown paper is one idea, but the costs of printing would be prohibitive. We’re desperately trying to find a way around it… the most obvious solution would be no more gifts on the cover, which we’re also seriously considering. Thanks for raising the issue!
Taking a stand
The article on Magda Wierzycka in your January issue [Stand & Deliver] reminded me of the saying ‘all that’s required for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing’.
I’ve been following Magda’s stand against corruption, and your article provided insight into this brave woman who’s shown big business how to move from victim mode to taking a stand and making a difference. She fills me with hope that her courage will inspire others to stand up and say ‘no more!’
The article made me think about how much we complain; we give ourselves permission to be unhappy but do nothing about it. We forget that change requires people to band together and demand something different.
I’ve chosen to volunteer in education and in entrepreneur development as my way of making a difference. I’d like to challenge readers to stop expressing dissatisfaction without taking action. South Africa has limitless potential. All that’s required is that we make the best possible use of all the resources – and people – that we have.
Thank you FAIRLADY for continuously reminding us of this by highlighting amazing people, like Magda, doing amazing things. Pat Roberts Ed: Thank you, Pat, for trying to make a difference instead of simply complaining! Just think, if we all did that…
My hubby always complains that I buy too many magazines that I discard anyway. Still, I bought the December issue and I’m glad I did.
The article about Jackie Burger [‘Quiet Strength’] brought me to tears! I’m on medication for a chronic condition, and one of the side effects is weight gain. The part in her interview about how fiercely competitive women can be spoke to me! Since putting on weight, I have experienced this: friends have made negative, judgmental comments. I’m in the process of accepting my body as it is, and this article was exactly what I needed!
Ed: Good for you, Thandiwe! The important thing is that our bodies are strong and healthy, and that’s it.