Bagged milk

My earliest memories of milk packaging are of glass bottles, followed by cardboard cartons which then evolved (or devolved) into plastic bottles.

According to this article on The Guardian, in Britain alone, over 27 million gallons of milk is consumed a week, of which at least two-thirds is sold in plastic bottles – but only one in four plastic bottles is recycled.

That’s just one country, and one week – imagine the global production of plastic milk bottles.

The clever Canadians though have been using less plastic for milk packaging for some time now by buying their milk in pouches/bags and the UK appears set to follow suit. Before you start thinking about all that crying over spilled milk, here’s how the system works

From South Caernarfon Creameries
(totally degradable 2 pint bags)

I admit it was a bit of a “doh!” moment when I saw those pics – I really envisioned milk pouches as being incredibly messy.

It’s estimated that if plastic milk bottles in the UK were replaced with plastic milk bags, 100,000 tonnes of plastic would be kept out of landfills. Using degradable plastics helps lessen the impact even further.

As odd as the milk bag may seem to most of us; some Canadians find the idea of milk in bottles equally strange – it’s just what you get used to I guess.

By the way, if you ever get the opportunity – the best packaging I ever came across for milk was a cow. There is nothing like milk straight from the source; try it out at least once in your life. I spent a little bit of time on dairy farms and the memory of the smell of all the fresh milk in the large dairy vats and a jug of the creamy stuff on the farm’s breakfast table causes my eyes to mist up every time.