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Ireland’s first zero waste festival

Ireland's first zero waste festival

In June, Ireland hosted the first Zero Waste Festival. Building on the success of other zero waste festivals such as Paris and Roubaix, the festival has achieved great success. This festival and other festivals held in the summer represent a new event in the thriving zero waste movement. Here, VOICE's Mindy O’Brien coordinator (Zero Waste member in Ireland) shared her experience of the festival. If you want to learn more about organizing zero waste events or festivals, please check out our "Zero Waste Events" guide!

Ireland has started an organic campaign to promote zero waste. In just one year, a simple facebook page for people interested in zero waste has grown to more than 6,300 members. Some people in the group decided to jointly organize a zero waste festival to showcase zero waste reusable products, bulk food suppliers, second-hand clothes exchange, eco-friendly booths, demonstrations and lectures, and delicious food.

One Saturday afternoon, the festival was held in a community hall and attracted a large group of people. In fact, because the venue has reached its maximum capacity, the organizers had to shut people out, and the event was completely sold out. This sounds familiar, because the same community invited Bea Johnson to give a lecture at Trinity College Dublin earlier this year, and this event was booked again, and people sat on the steps to listen to the lecture.

Personally, I bought walnuts, balsamic vinegar, rice and couscous in bulk, and I was happy to avoid the common plastic packaging used for such items (except vinegar). I also bought natural scrubs and bamboo toothbrushes for my kitchen and bathroom.

There are also seminars on how to live a zero-waste lifestyle and how to make your own household cleaners. VOICE has a booth that talked about Zero Waste Cashel, the first zero waste town in Ireland. In addition, the “Conscious Cup Campaign” was launched, urging consumers to use reusable take-out coffee cups, and asking coffee shops to provide discounts when giving away reusable cups.

Cute vegan food is provided for lunch. Some teenage boys rent out reusable plates and cutlery (1 Euro/plate and 50 Euro/tableware) for diners. I am particularly impressed by their ingenuity. Those who do not want to rent out plates can use compostable containers and utensils.

The festival has been a huge success, and plans are being made to extend the concept to other parts of Ireland. Currently, they hope to organize a week-long series of events in September to explore different topics such as food waste, clothes/fashion, responsible waste disposal, reduction of food packaging (growing and making your own), cleaning, gifts and celebrations Activities and involve the community.

Ireland's passion for zero waste is in vogue!

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Ireland's first zero waste festival-31/08/2017

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