Terre Pruitt's Blog

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Things That Make Me Go “Hmmm, WHAT A WASTE!”

Posted by terrepruitt on January 26, 2012

Sometimes there are things I just don’t understand.  I find that when I ask I get answers.  So my questions today revolve around packaging and waste.  I am not meaning to pick on any on particular company but I am so confused as to why, in a world where we are trying to reduce waste and we have to pay for bags in which to put the stuff we just purchased, is it ok to package things like this.  To me both of these packages are a waste.

Dance Exercise, Zumba like, Nia class, Nia teacher, Nia cardio workoutI have a Nia student who always smells great and she told me the name of the perfume.  I asked her if she would mind if I bought some and she said, no.  It was before Christmas and I thought it would be a great gift idea for my husband to get for me.  I love it when people tell me what they want and I try to help him out that way too.  Since he was really busy AND there was other things that was on his mind he decided we could just order it online.  I was excited.  New perfume.  But when I opened the box the only thing I was thinking is, “You have got to be kidding me!!!!  Is it REALLY necessary to have ALL of this packaging for one bottle of perfume?”  As I said, since I am not trying to necessarily bad mouth the company, I tried to take a picture that didn’t directly show the name, but you can see there is a piece of folded cardboard that goes first around the bottle, then that goes in the box, then there is a sheath that goes around that.  Why?  Just the ONE box would do just fine, I don’t think there is really any reason for the inner piece of cardboard and the sheath.  To me the whole thing reeked of wastefulness.  I was actually somewhat disappointed in the company because of that.

dance exercise, Nia class, Nia student, Nia teacher, Nia San Jose, San Jose NiaThen I was at the grocery store and I was faced with this.  REALLY?!?!?!  First of all prepackaging fruits and veggies sticks me with more than I want and second it seems like a HUGE waste of material.  I could have easily used one bag to put my two zucchinis in, but no, I was forced to by five and they are packaged with a papery-plastic sheet, inside a plastic tray, wrapped with more plastic, and then labeled with even more papery-plastic.  WHAT IS THAT ABOUT?  How is that being responsible and cutting down on waste?  FOUR things, instead of one bag?  I just don’t get it.

I don’t understand when we are forced to be “green” in some areas, but in other areas waste like this is allowed to continue.  This type of stuff confuses me.  I am not sure the shiny material that the sheath was made out of can be recycled, but I put it in the recycling along with the rest of the wasteful packaging.

Whew.  Ok, thanks, I am done with my rant.  🙂  Do you ever come across packaging of a product that you feel is excessive?

18 Responses to “Things That Make Me Go “Hmmm, WHAT A WASTE!””

  1. I could not agree with you more. As a mostly on-line shopper, I see so much waste. Thankfully, most everything can be recycled and I save the brown paper for homemade wrapping paper. Yes, packaging is ridiculous. I understand keeping a product safe and fresh, but really, enough is enough.

    If it’s any consolation, my brother’s company where my daughter works and where I used to work sells and ships a lot of supplies to go with the machines they sell, we prided ourselves on NEVER having to buy boxes or packing material. We reused every scrap and box that we took in. So I’m sure some companies do that as well, if not, they should. It certainly saved money. That stuff is expensive.

    One good thing, we both know our cats like to play in the boxes. 😉 Thank you for a wonderful post.


    • What disturbed me about this is this packaging was not due to online shopping. This was their normal packaging. I was just kind of eluding to the fact that I didn’t know about all this packaging when it was purchased because it was purchased online. And I know that things can be recycled, but WHY make so much waste in the first place? And again, I just want to re-state this packaging was not due to it being shipped.

      I am sure there are compainies that do better and a lot of individuals, but this was actually a HUGE company in my opinion and I would think that as a HUGE company they would do better. And I know that shiny printed material is expensive — I didn’t even want to get into that! 🙂

      Thank you for visiting and commenting! So nice to see you here!


      • Yep, even regular packaging is too much, aside from all of the shipping boxes and material. Well, maybe if we speak up things will start to change. If a product is really good, it shouldn’t need all that fancy packaging to attract people to it. That’s all it is with some things, a lot of fancy wrapping and not much inside. Also, it would keep costs down all around and be better for the consumer. Now I’m ranting. Ha! 😉


  2. Yes…I have…. Have you ever tried to “free” a barbie from it’s packaging? Holy heck! It takes a lot of muscle.


    • You made me laugh a loud. It has been a very long time since I had to free a Barbie. I bet it wasn’t so bad when I was doing it.


    • Mike said

      This past Christmas I had to “free” a small, motorized car from it’s cool looking little kid box – with a SCREWDRIVER! Honest to God – the car was screwed down TO the box. Pretty soon boxes will announce: batteries, screwdriver, sharp knife and eye protection not included.


      • Now that we are on this path, I am thinking difficult to open things could be a way to deter theft. If it is easy to get out of the package and slip down your pants then, people would do it.

        That will probably be one of my future rants – theft and vandalism.

        Thanks for stopping by, Mike!


  3. niachick said

    I have that same rant, Terre. Boggles the mind…not to mention how hard it is to get into those kinds of multi-packaged items. Crazy. Thanks for posting.


  4. Michele said

    I love this rant…such a waste, this is one of my pet peeves as well. It is like some companies (people) are totally unaware of the large impact they have on our environment and abuse their wealth, because they could save so much money by using less packaging!. Arghhh


  5. Mike said

    Terre – I couldn’t agree more. I don’t have pictures to share like you but I sure have the stories of having to open one small thing, wrapped in some sort of indestructable plastic that requires scissors or a knife. If they made airplanes out of that stuff, nobody would ever get injured. I don’t get it either. I once opened a large box (note – BOX) of cologne which was a challenge in itself. When I finally got it opened, a SMALL bottle of cologne was inside – propped up no less on some sort of plastic shelf to FILL said box.


    • It just dawned on me that it could be the small things are packaged big and akward to thwart theft.

      The items I had were not difficult to open. I didn’t need any special tools, it just seemed like overkill in regards to the amount of packaging.

      For things that are small in large packages, it could be (now that I think about it, and as I mentioned) due to theft. The same with difficult to get out of packaing. It could be a way to deter theft. But for my perfume the bottle was the same size as the box. There was no large packaging or difficult to remove, just A LOT of it. A fall-apart box and sheath too much – in my opinion. And the zucchini, just as waste all around!


  6. suzicate said

    It is such a waste of paper. Another waste is how the dr offices are supposedly going paperless, yet when you need the codes for filing insurance the computer spits out five times the amount than a regular receipt, so in their quest to save they waste!!!!!


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