Reduce Package Waste, DIY

Reduce Package Waste, DIY

Make a Difference, DIY

Sunshine Coast Organic Meats is Australia’s largest supplier of organic meat, with a delicious range of product, and an emphasis on making a positive difference not just to mainstream nutrition and well-being, but animal welfare and environmental sustainability.

As with many other people around the world, we’re breaking the boundaries of common practice and actively working to make a difference in all areas of our business, and that includes waste. We recently discussed product packaging and our Shift to rPET recycled plastic trays to serve and store your favourite butcher staples, which is another great step towards environmental sustainability. ​​You can support us and join us in creating a more environmentally friendly business model in a few key ways: buying our ethically produced products, supporting our friends at Kunara, and other local, sustainable brands and harnessing the power of reduce, re-use and recycle.

We’re more than just meat at Sunshine Coast Organic Meats, we also have shelves full of grocery staples and delicious condiments including Beerenberg condiments, olive oil, sauces and the local favourite: Maleny Milk. While we’re proud of supporting local and treasured brands who do good for the welfare of our bodies, animals and environment, at the end of the bottle (and trust me, you’ll run out quicker than you think because it’s all so good!) there’s leftover packaging to consider.

Glass is a great eco-friendly option, but only if you can find a way to properly recycle or re-use, otherwise it ends up in landfill just like plastic bottles and bags. Glass doesn’t decompose, and instead can break and become micro-glass, which can get in waterways, into animal’s stomachs or continue to contribute to pollution build up. With your help, we can reduce the amount of product that ends up in landfill. 

Here is a few ideas of ways to re-use the containers of all your favourite shelf products. 

Glass Jars  

There’s a few things you can do with any kind of glass jar, including propagating your favourite plants to abundance (all you have to do is cut a piece off your plant and place it in water), or re-use as general containers for anything that fits including earbuds, toothpicks, floss sticks, to hold pencils and pens, or utensils in the kitchen. 

Bulk food places thrive when you bring in your own containers to carry product, and jars are a perfect example of this. Buy your organic buckwheat flour, chocolate covered freeze-dried strawberries and muesli mix and fill those jars up! You can also ditch the freezer bags and ziplock bags in your fridge and freezer by taking advantage of empty jars, helping to reduce the amount of plastic you use, and giving glass a new life. 

Empty jars make perfect vessels for DIY gifts. You can fill them with homemade broths, stocks, simple syrup or sauces to gift to others, or pe-made hot chocolate mixes (just add warm milk!) or soup starters (just add stock powder, beans, vegetables to the jar, then add to a pot of boiling water and voila!). It’s a cheap, thoughtful and productive DIY gift that really shares the love — love of food, the environment and others. 

Try making a mini moss terrarium to get a bit of nature inside. 

Unique Shaped Jars 
Uniquely shaped jars like our Pukara Estate bottles are beautiful to look at and difficult to DIY. You can’t fit much in the tapered top, but want to take advantage of the unique and beautiful look? After you’ve removed the label, use it as a DIY candle stick by putting a tapered candle of the right shape and size in the top. It could also be used as a statement centrepiece for a wedding, party or fancy dinner setting. Add your own decoration like stickers, paint or gold leafs, add flowers, or faux grasses, or anything you can think of. It can also be used as an incense holder, filled with fairy lights for a DIY lamp look or — and this one is our favourite — to make infused olive oil! Buy your favourite olive oil and fill the bottle halfway, then add whatever flavours you’re wanting to infuse whether it’s garlic, peppercorns, chili or rosemary. 

Tall Jars 

The 300ml Beerenberg sauces are just like your favourite jars with added height! 

The skinnier neck of the sauce bottles can make normal jar upcycling a bit of a challenge, but don’t lose hope. Once you’ve removed the label, you can use it as a cost-free flower vase, or to hold tapered candles. If you really want to dust off your DIY skills, you can cut and sand down the neck to have uniquely shaped and cost-effective glasses (just ensure you’re doing it properly and stay safe). Bottles with the skinnier top make excellent pouring for pancake batter, icing, or anything else you can imagine.

Milk Jugs 
Maleny Milk milk containers are made of a thick, opaque plastic, which is the best way to keep costs low and keep milk fresh and delicious. The other great thing about these milk jugs is there are dozens of ways to re-use the containers. Get out your scissors, because you’re spoiled for choice with milk containers.

You can make a DIY kitchen funnel for pouring your homemade stock into jars, or as a scoop for your bulk flour. You can use the milk jug to store scraps for stock or broth (keep your onion, carrot, celery and mushroom scraps in the freezer until you’ve got enough to fill a pot, then make homemade veggie stock! You can also include meat off-cuts and bones). If you’re a green thumb, you can use the bottom of milk jugs as a plant pot dish to catch the run off, or make a precision watering can by puncturing a few holes in the lid. 


Let your creativity run wild and try out anything you can think of! Worst case scenario, it doesn’t work quite right and you try again. Just ensure you’ve given all of your jars a thorough clean and don’t forgot to add a refill to your shopping list so you don’t miss out!