Unnecessary or excessive packaging can be frustrating. Packaging can be avoided altogether by choosing to buy products loose or using items, such as reusable drinks bottles or coffee cups, rather than disposable ones. Similarly, some packaging can be useful to us, glass jars can be reused as pencil holders or cardboard can be used for home composting.
However, not all packaging is bad and it can play an important role in reducing food waste because it protects products from damage or contamination. Some foods will keep fresher for longer when left in their packaging - a cucumber will last three days more if sealed in shrink-wrap plastic and the air in salad bags is modified to keep salad fresher for longer too. In addition, food sold with re-sealable openings, or in more convenient portion sizes - such as half loaves of bread - can help consumers to better manage the food they buy.