Please note: I receive commissions for purchases made through links in this post: https://honeygusto.com/zero-waste-starter-kit
So you’re considering going green then? Well, this is the perfect place to start. A zero waste starter kit by Battle Green Box eases you in nicely. We’ll talk about this, the benefits and perhaps a couple of disadvantages. Also, considering bamboo is an integral part of the package, let’s have a deep-dive on that, talking about the many wonders of the grass. Then look at other bamboo sustainable products as a way to make your home truly eco-friendly. I know for many you this is just the beginning.
What’s in the box?
Well, first of all, it’s handmade. And that’s pretty cool on its own, right? Your unsustainable plastic canteen cutlery isn’t, that’s for sure. There’s something really authentic about the zero waste starter kit. You’re really doing your bit to save the planet with this one because you’re greatly reducing overall plastic consumption. Actually, in this box, nothing is composed of plastic. And in the world we live in, everything seems ‘plasticy’. This is a pleasant alternative that makes you feel good about yourself.
It’s priced at £49.95 at the time of writing, which admittedly isn’t the cheapest. However, it’s not like any of the products are a one-time-use deal. It’s available to buy on Etsy. So let’s list what we’ve got:
- 1 bamboo cutlery set: a knife, fork, spoon, straw & straw cleaner
- 1 cotton pouch for the above-mentioned cutlery items
- 1 organic cotton string shopping bag (green colour)
- 1 large cotton produce bag (white colour)
- 1 organic mint shampoo bar in a travel tin
- 1 bamboo toothbrush
- 1 bamboo travel case for the toothbrush
- 1 vegan natural deodorant balm in card tube
- 1 exfoliating plant-based body sponge
- 200 bamboo cotton buds
And for a visual aid:
Although it’s on the slightly pricey side, all these items are lasting you a while. And as for the cutlery set, forever…
So long as you’re properly maintaining them, which we’ll discuss soon.
Plus, Etsy offers free shipping on orders from Battle Green Box that are £25 or over, then receiving the item only 2-3 days later. After all, this is an Etsy bestseller – they have to get it to their customers quick!
Benefits to the zero waste starter kit
Now you may be asking: Donald, what about the packing materials. I bet that’s plastic, right? No! Battle Green Box decided to use completely recyclable dunnage. Check out the image below. Often, even the packaging and dunnage has been recycled itself, so we’re not receiving virgin materials here.
In addition, the zero waste starter kits all come with a welcome note that can be personalized with a name and message. This makes it a perfect gift. It looks and feels that way. Plus, you’ll find if you care for bamboo products well, they’ll last a lifetime. So the cutlery set ain’t going anywhere. Of course, some of the items are perishable. Eventually, you’ll run out of cotton buds or soap and have to replace them. Fortunately, Battle Green Box has put all the items on Etsy for individual sale. You can buy as needed!
They’re using shredded cardboard for the zero waste starter kit. So if you’re taking all the items out the box and not storing them in it, you can just recycle it. Or, even reuse the dunnage yourself. For example, I’d use that if I were sending a more fragile item to a friend, client or family member. Your parcel is well protected here.
And for an even crisper view of the infographic.
Bamboo is so ubiquitous because China exports a lot of it. They love the stuff. It represents an inextricable relationship between the Chinese people and the environment. So it’s not just the Giant Panda going crazy for it.
You need to care for bamboo products in a particular way. But thankfully, Battle Green Box has you covered with care instructions inside the zero waste starter kit. And if you look at the video just below, I think it’s summed up perfectly.
Right, you’ll want to oil bamboo cutlery from the zero waste starter kit. And that goes for any bamboo bowls, kitchen utensils and plates you’ve got. Also, the great thing about the oils and waxes listed below: ALL NATURAL. Simply apply oil to a paper towel and coat the whole bamboo item and allow air-drying. A repeated application of oil once every few months will prevent the bamboo from cracking and splitting over the years. Some of the best oiling products are:
- Beeswax bar
- Coconut oil
- Almond oil. If you’re using this, its a very easy application with these bamboo dropper bottles.
Not to mention, just handle with care. Although bamboo kitchen utensils are more robust than a ceramic plate that’ll smash if you drop it, bamboo products can still get chipped and cracked. That renders it unsafe to use because water can seep into the cracks and encourage bacterial growth.
Furthermore, both green and white cotton bags are pretty durable. Provided you’re just using them to carry your produce, or maybe a couple of books, you’ll likely find they’ll last you a very long time (a lifetime even). More so than plastic carrier bags. The tin can for the mint soap is perfect because tin doesn’t rust. So you can use this as a soap container for as long as you like. The soap bar might not be to everyone’s liking, it does have a super strong minty scent, but you could substitute it with another bar when it runs out.
Pro’s & con’s of bamboo
Don’t get me wrong, there certainly isn’t any cons with the product, as such, but I think Big Green Box could make some slight improvements to make this almost damn perfect!
It’s light, tough and elastic, a unique combination rarely seen in other materials. And people have known this for centuries. The world’s oldest water pipes are from China, composed of bamboo. Bamboo is said to be stronger than steel. I certainly wouldn’t want to be hit over the head with it.
And it’s not just the zero waste starter kit, bamboo is used in a multitude of things: musical instruments, clothing, food, flooring, furniture, and houseware. Honestly, the list could go on.
Now then, let’s look at some of the drawbacks. Are you following into a bamboobied trap? See what I did there? Anyway…
You don’t want to rush into this. Bamboo is a wonder item and being produced at a crazy rate. There are so many bamboo farmers out there. As such, it’s not all perfectly harvested, and on the other end, there are so many importers. Then it might not be going through an eco-friendly manufacturing process. It could taint the environmental value of bamboo, even lace it with chemicals and create a health & safety hazard.
As for the products themselves, there are a couple of things you can’t do with them.
They aren’t suitable for dishwashers and microwaves. You’ll just have to clean the bamboo products in warm soapy water. But to be honest, it’s all you need and not a problem. Bamboo is naturally antimicrobial anyway. And you can certainly put steaming hot food in your bamboo bowl, just not the microwave.
In addition, you’ll want to take extra precautions when air drying, which is a tiny bit more of a nuisance. It’s not like a ceramic plate where if you put it back in the cupboard with some residual water, it won’t harm the integrity of the plate. But for bamboo it could as mould growth can occur. Simply avoid this by air-drying for a few hours.
So to summarize the downsides, it really all comes down to sustainability management. And it doesn’t have a Fair Trade Certificate, so it’s hard to know for customers if it’s responsibly sourced. And whether or not working conditions are good with fair wages. This is a big deal.
The wonder grass
Yes, it is actually a grass! To be honest, I was quite surprised when I found this out. The wonderful thing is the root system isn’t damaged when it’s chopped down for harvesting, so it doesn’t have to be replanted. And you get a lot of bang for your buck with the fibre. It produces twice as much fibre than pine, and that’s the fastest growing wood crop. So you can manufacture a lot of clothing with bamboo, which is softer than cotton and similar to silk.
And for an even crisper view of the infographic.
What other bamboo products are out there?
I honestly think this deserves a separate standalone article. Otherwise, we’d be here all day. But I’ll do some research on the advantages and disadvantages of bamboo flooring, clothing, kitchen items, and landscaping. Even touch on the true environmental benefits. Undoubtedly, you’ll want to purchase bamboo products from FSC certified companies: Forest Stewardship Council. That way, you know it’s responsibly sourced.
Transform your home
Bamboo is truly a wonder grass. It’s served us tremendously for thousands of years and I’m sure it’ll remain so for many more. Couple with sustainable harvesting and manufacturing, it can be the environmental saviour we need. Therefore, why not start your sustainability journey with the zero waste starter kit? Then build your way up to bamboo decorations and beyond.
Bamboo houses anyone?
Okay, you might not want to go that far, but start small and build your way up. Don’t remortgage! Needless to say, you’ll be amazed and what your efforts will do for conserving our green planet.
Please note: I receive commissions for purchases made through links in this post: https://honeygusto.com/zero-waste-starter-kit. But these are all products I highly recommend. I would never post about a product/service I haven’t verified and/or personally used.
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Battle Green (2019). Personalised thank you note. [image] Available at: https://www.instagram.com/p/BwWSI0YHxwu/ [Accessed 10 Jul. 2019].
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MacBeath Hardwood (n.d.). AMERICA’S FORESTS ARE RENEWABLE, ABUNDANT AND SUSTAINABLE. [online] macbeath.com. Available at: https://www.macbeath.com/environment/forest-facts [Accessed 9 Jul. 2019].
Rose, D. (2018). BATTLE GREEN BOX – La prima BOX ECOSOSTENIBILE – GIVEAWAY🍁. Available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yYqLfG9XGjs [Accessed 8 Jul. 2019].
Rosenberg, T. (2012). In Africa’s Vanishing Forests, the Benefits of Bamboo. [online] opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com. Available at: https://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/03/13/in-africas-vanishing-forests-the-benefits-of-bamboo/ [Accessed 10 Jul. 2019].