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Frustrated shopper sparks debate with photo of aftermath of opening product: 'The hypocrisy'

"When you look at manufacturing and logistics…"

"When you look at manufacturing and logistics..."

Photo Credit: iStock

Governments around the world are taking strides to ban single-use plastics such as shopping bags. These bans help keep harmful trash out of the environment, including the ocean, where plastic trash has been building up for decades. 

However, manufacturers are setting the movement back by overusing plastic packaging in their products — and this shopper has had enough.

What happened? 

The shopper shared their frustration in a post on r/mildlyinfuriating

"I can't buy a plastic bag but companies can individually wrap everything to their heart's content," said the angry Redditor.

They attached a photo to show what they were talking about: a package of toilet paper that contained multiple layers of plastic wrap dividing the rolls.

"When you look at manufacturing and logistics..."
Photo Credit: Reddit

"Not using this as an excuse to buy my own plastic bags… it's just… the hypocrisy," the original poster clarified in a comment.

Why does the unnecessary plastic wrap matter? 

Plastic bags and wrappers add a layer of inconvenience for buyers who have to deal with the trash. Many of them end up as litter, especially in the ocean. There, marine animals are harmed when they try to eat the plastic or get stuck inside it. Other pieces end up as part of the infamous Great Pacific Garbage Patch

Meanwhile, all of that plastic costs manufacturers money — an expense that gets passed on to consumers in higher purchase prices.

Despite this, shoppers are seeing more and more plastic in stores. "Overwrapping is like an epidemic," said one commenter.

What is the manufacturer doing to make its products more eco-friendly?

The toilet paper in the photo came from a Canadian brand called Compliments. The company has produced other, more environmentally conscious products, such as compostable tableware. It's a step in the right direction and will hopefully lead to more eco-friendly thinking in the future.

What can I do to reduce my plastic waste? 

Besides choosing products with less plastic packaging and looking for reusable alternatives, you can help with the effort to recycle whatever plastic you use. Look on the package for the triangular recycling symbol, which should have a number inside of it. That number tells you the type of plastic, which you can use with this directory to find a recycling center nearby that is equipped to process your trash. 

Unfortunately, not all recycling centers can take all types of plastic — which is one reason so much plastic has ended up in landfills in the past.

At the end of the day, though, companies also need to change their approach. 

"When you look at manufacturing and logistics, everything gets wrapped, unwrapped, wrapped, unwrapped like a dozen times before you even get it," one user pointed out — making it an area ripe for improvement.

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