Tips for living a green life in Suffolk in 2022


12:00 p.m. December 29, 2021

Owners of eco-friendly businesses across Suffolk have shared their actionable tips for making eco-friendly change in 2022.

This year Bonitas Wholefoods refill store opened in Stowmarket and Ipswich mum Lucy Storey started her new business, Lucy’s Unwrapped & Refill, at Woodbridge Road.

These are just two of the eco-friendly companies trying to help Suffolk families lead greener lives.

Here are 12 simple changes you can make in 2022

Mel Menhams runs an eco-friendly business, Cupboard Love, which helps Suffolk shoppers reduce their use of single-use plastic
– Credit: Mel Menhams

January – buy a reusable water bottle or coffee mug

Mel Menhams runs Cupboard Love, a mobile van that regularly appears in the Woodbridge and Framlingham markets.

Cupboard love sells food and household products that customers can take home in reusable containers, reducing the need for items wrapped in single-use plastics.

Ms Menhams said: “Look at an area of ​​your life and see what current products you are using that could be replaced with a reusable alternative – a water bottle or a coffee mug are evident here.”

The Cupboard Love charging van

Mel Menham’s Cupboard Love van appears in Woodbridge and Framlingham markets and east Suffolk, offering plastic-free shopping
– Credit: Mel Menhams

February – try reusable makeup remover wipes

For those who may already have reusable bottles and cups, Ms. Menhams suggests you try a reusable safety razor or makeup remover wipes.

March – try a shampoo or conditioner bar

Jo Rainbird set up her eco-friendly mobile charging store – Choose Refills in May 2021 and said she was “amazed at the support since.”

One of Jo’s advice is: “Swap your bottled shampoo and conditioner for a natural bar shampoo and conditioner – our bars are made locally at Stowmarket and each is equivalent to 2/3 shampoo bottles, making it better value for money while reducing the single use plastics.

    Conditioner bars and shampoos sold by Choose Refills

Made in Stowmarket – conditioner and shampoo bars sold by Choose Refills
– Credit: Jo Rainbird

April – recharge instead of buying new products

Instead of adding another product to your cart, refill your existing bottles.

Jo said: “Refills are available for all your laundry, cleaning and personal care needs. Eco-friendly products are gentler on your skin while reducing plastic waste.

May – let your garden go wild

Oliver and Theresa Walters have opened 'Bonitas Wholesfoods', a new whole food and vegan food store in Stow

Oliver and Theresa Walters opened ‘Bonitas Wholesfoods’, a new whole food and vegan food store in Stowmarket in 2021
– Credit: Sarah Lucy Brown

Oliver Walters, of Bonitas Wholefoods at Stowmarket, said that when it comes to an eco-friendly lifestyle “don’t worry about not doing a lot” and said people are welcome to chat with him in the store if they are looking for ideas.

Mr Walters said: “A very simple change you can make at no cost, if you are lucky enough to have a garden, let a small patch of grass grow in the wild.

“The benefits to insects and other wildlife would be huge if we all did this. And we think it looks great.”

June – try a product with less chemicals

Another tip from Mr. and Mrs. Walters is to try only one eco-friendly product – for example, an eco-friendly dishwashing liquid that doesn’t contain all of the chemicals that a non-eco-friendly product does.

July – waste less food

Lucy Storey has opened the zero waste store Lucy's Unwrapped & Refill in Woodbridge Road, Ipswich.

Lucy Storey opened Lucy’s Unwrapped & Refill zero waste store in Woodbridge Road, Ipswich in 2021
– Credit: Archant

Lucy Storey, a single mother of two boys, opened her refill store in Woodbridge Road, Ipswich earlier this year, selling everything from pasta to candy and chocolate.

Lucy’s best advice is to buy locally, supporting greengrocers and butchers and buying only what you need for each recipe.

A weekly meal plan can help here.

August – think about what you put your sandwiches in

Beautiful picnic products from Little home-eco based in Suffolk

Beautiful picnic products from Little home-eco based in Suffolk
– Credit: Kale Cole

Kala Cole, who lives in Suffolk, sells her small, colorful, reusable eco-friendly products on Etsy, including sandwich bags and sandwich wrappers.

His advice is: “Reuse whatever you can, save bread bags and reuse them in place of cling film or take them to your butchers and put your meat in there.” ”

September – buy or reuse gift bags

Little home-eco also sells washable and reusable birthday and Christmas gift bags on Etsy.

But if you don’t want to buy again, consider taking out the gift bags you already received for reuse, you could even give them new life by adding a new tag.

October – buy it pre-liked

Another tip from Kala: “If my kids ask for a toy at Christmas or for birthdays, I always check eBay and second-hand sites to see if I can get it ahead of time.

“It saves money and gives this toy a second life. The same goes for clothes, fast fashion is not good for the planet or your bank account, buy second-hand when you can.”

November – give someone an ecological gift

Tammy of the Ruby and the Eco store in Debenham said the store team is committed to doing their part to protect the environment.

She said: “The new store offers a range of gifts and household products that are environmentally friendly and produced in a sustainable manner.”

December – donate to a food bank

Many of us donate to food banks before Christmas, but remember you can also donate after the festivities are over.

Unwanted food, drinks, and even some freebies like toiletries, will be warmly welcomed by food banks and help you reduce waste.


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