Today in celebration of Earth day 2021 we are launching our new and exciting environmental campaign called #WeChooseReuse.  

This campaign has the circular economy at its core. Spearheaded by our International partner: BreakFreeFromPastic we are going one step further and showcasing just how many businesses, individuals and elected officials here in Ireland are Choosing to Reuse!  

But why is this campaign so important? In 2018 each of us in Ireland produced the highest volume of waste per capita in the EU, indicating a pressing need to help push for change right now, and to make the change as easy as possible for people.

Recycling, although an important part of the waste management system, is unfortunately not the only answer. With relatively low recycling rates for plastic here in Ireland we need to stop the production at the source and instead create robust refill/ reuse systems.

So what would this look like? Not a futuristic utopian ideal, but actually a hark back to the past when we used our own containers to refill at our local shops.  

But would this work? Well, Irish people rallied around the plastic bag levy back in 2002. Today, we all have our own arsenal of reusable shopping bags at home. Now we need to take that one step further and bring our own containers to refill out nuts, lentils, rice, pasta, cleaning products and beauty products so that we can stop the overuse and production of single use plastics/packaging.

If you have never heard of refill or reuse, then have a look in your area. If anything, this campaign has showed us just how many refill/reuse businesses there are on our Island. Chances are there is one near you too.

We are celebrating business all around Ireland who are already embracing reuse and refill but at it’s core we are asking as many individuals, small businesses and elected officials to SIGN THE PLEDGE HERE

We are hoping this will bring the issues of plastic waste to the fore and really get people motivated to make a change (in their personal, professional, political lives). We advocate well-run reuse/refill systems as a way to solve this crisis we find ourselves in. There are solutions; we just need people to be aware of them and to use them.  

VOICE Ireland has 53 small businesses around Ireland that are actively supporting our campaign. We have given them a placard saying #WeChooseReuse and they have held the sign aloft outside their premises. We are attempting to show Ireland just how many refill/reuse heroes there are in our communities. Will you #ChoosetoReuse?