July 4, 2016

What’s so different about Mullumbimby?

Mullumbimby might have a reputation for being the counter culture capital of Australia but does that mean it’s truly greener than anywhere else?

A team of volunteers took part in a Street Snack & Clean as part of the Byron Shire Plastic Free July program of activities and the amount of litter collected surprised the volunteers. Typical litter items including drink containers & cigarette buts were collected by a surprisingly average number of dedicated clean up Australia types.

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So why has the Plastic Free July challenge been so heartily embraced by residents, schools & especially businesses in this town?   It’s seems to come down to the attitude of the townsfolk – especially the business leaders.  Rob Bridgland stated when he was asked about the current waste services and costs incurred by the town’s largest electrical and furniture stores that he owns “if we could divert all of our waste from landfill I would happily pay double the price we are currently spending”.  Daniel Tiffin, manager of the IGA, has written an open letter to his customers seeking their feedback on whether the store should return the plastic bags to the front counter after the 2 weeks they’ve guaranteed they’ll be gone for is up.

IMG_0649 Mullum Instyle Living & Eden’s Landing are other businesses that have also posted hand penned signs in their shops that inform customers of their commitment to reducing the volume of single use plastic they supply to the town.Responsible Cafes Poster Mullumbimby (1)

Drink container waste (including water & soft drink bottles, coffee cups, lids & straws) make up 33% of the plastic in the oceans globally and 45% of litter in NSW.  To address the scurge of this plastic pollution 12 of the towns coffee sellers incentivise customers to BYO cup by being registered participants of the Responsible Cafe network and the pubs are coming on board to take action to break the habit of providing plastic straws with every drink that isn’t a beer or glass of wine!

A community thank-you card  will be available to sign out front of Stewart’s Menswear every Mon, Wed & Fri during July between 10-2 so please drop by the ‘Sewing Bags for Community’ stall and put your name on the card to give the traders confidence their efforts are appreciated:)

Going above and beyond understandably as this initiative is dead on their business ethos, Santos Organics has offered all customers 15% off bulk items throughout July using the influence they poses to accelerate the main stream shift away from overly packaged food items to the naked delights of bulk food buying!  To avail of this discount simply register at A program of events including beach & street cleans, film screenings and school activity’s being co ordinated by The Bolsa Bags, Enriqueta Marquez can also be found on the Plastic Free Byron website!

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For a complete list of participating and supporting businesses and organisations checkout the new page on the Mullum Cares website, Mullumbimby Traders Embrace the Opportunity that Plastic Free July presents.