On many occasions, we’re asked whether or not it is “legal” to put our sauces into pre-loved beer bottles. Not only is it totally legal, it is encouraged by local councils and food authorities.
Re-using glass is way more economical, earthwise and monetary, than recycling or sending the bottles to landfill. The Mid Coast Council and the beer companies don’t even need to do anything, we do it all. Although it seems cheaper for us to use this abundance of FREE bottles, the man/granny hours involved in collecting, soaking, scrubbing and sterilizing is out of control. We do it for love.
Even though most people do what they can to protect our environment, less than 25% of glass is actually recycled and the percentage of re-use is next to zero. Back in the day, the re-use of glass bottles was standard. Company’s retained ownership of their bottles; people paid a couple of cents extra for their beverage and that money was refunded on return of the bottle. We can all thank Nathaniel C. Wyeth (October 24, 1911 – July 4, 1990) for his feats in the engineering of a plastic drinking bottle which is able to hold the pressure of carbonated liquids. Come on down Coca Cola! But… without going on my long winded plastic bottle rant, I do wonder if the man was proud of his life’s achievements of destroying our planet one bottle at a time?
Since 2015, Granny Mel’s has put our sauces into approximately 20,000 pre-loved beer bottles. That’s a lot of hot summer days, enjoying having our hands in the cool water and even more freezing cold winters when we dread having to wash those god awful bottles. But it’s not enough! 20K is a drop in the ocean compared to what is actually in our landfills, water ways and the ocean itself. It also takes a lot of water to clean these bottles. We run on rain water and every year, things start looking a little bit hairy when the tanks get low. But, what’s the harm in drinking a bit of frog shit and letting the chilli plants die when the demand for clean bottles is upon us. We must be doing something right because Mother Nature has always given us rain in the nick of time.
If you live on the mid north coast, you can contact us to organise a lidded bin and weekly pick ups or feel free to drop your bottles off to us on Thursdays at The Secret Weekly Farmer's Market.