As your typical university student, it may not be surprising to hear my weekly shops do not tend to occur at stores such as Waitrose or Marks and Spencer.
That being said, after an 9 hour waitressing shift, not even my pitiful bank balance could persuade me not to ‘accidentally stumble’ into M&S in search of something to satisfy my Veggie Percy Pig cravings. (come on, I can’t be the only one…?)
Unfortunately my pursuit into pinky paradise was cut short by my arrival at the vegetable aisle. Now we all know vegetables are scary at the best of times but what I saw that day was truly terrifying.
Those that know me well will be aware of my slight soft spot for the environment, hence why I chose to be vegetarian all those years ago. I’m sure some of you will be rolling your eyes in despair as yet another person moans about Earth’s incoming annihilation due to human ineptitude. Admittedly, it can be quite boring to think about the world, or lack of one, that we will leave to our innocent children. But, someone has to do it, and today lovely people, that someone is going to be me.
As you can see from the photos below, M&S feverishly attempted to win the race of plastic consumption, choosing to wrap virtually every vegetable known to mankind in plastic. I ask you, why on earth does a pepper need a plastic case? Indeed, last time I had checked neither potatoes nor broccolis needed plastic protection. We may have introduced the plastic-bag charge (which I am a big fan of), but what’s the point if M&S are going to use all their saved plastic to make sure the courgettes have their own personal space?
All jokes aside, seeing the amount of unnecessary plastic was a shock. I’ll try not to bore you with statistics but environmental researchers estimate over a million plastic bottles are produced around the world per minute. Furthermore, a 2015 study found that only 9% of the seven billion tonnes of plastic waste generated is actually recycled.
Perhaps M&S had seen the rates of environmental debris from with negligent Nestle or slimy Starbucks, and jealously tried to compete. If so, kudos to them, but at what price? 10p? £1? The complete dismantling of the ozone layer as we know it?
I know we all use plastic but come on Marks, try a bit harder.