The Buzz Blog

Welcome to our blog 'The Buzz'.  Here we will keep you updated on what is happening in the world of bees and honey and anything else that we think you would be interested in.  If there is a topic you would like to hear about drop us an email and I'll see what we can do.


Waste Pyramid - Reduce Wastage

Written by Stephanie on June 7th, 2018.      0 comments

This second blog in my 'waste pyramid' blogs is about reducing waste.  If we can't avoid waste then we need to try and reduce it as much as possible.

I've already covered food waste in my previous blog so please check that out.  


Rethink-Produce-Full-26Other Things We Can Do To Reduce Waste:

  • Borrow instead of buying
  • Buy second hand instead of new
  • Learn to repair or get someone else to repair things rather than throwing out, it's amazing what a new lease of life items get by doing this
  • Wrap presents in fabric or use reusable paper gift bags
  • Take your own reusable containers for takeaway food and drinks
  • Take your own containers to the butcher for your meat
  • Take reusable cloth bags everywhere you go
  • Look into getting chickens, start a compost bin or/and worm farm to reduce food scrap wastage
  • Do not buy drinks in plastic
  • Avoid single use plastic 
  • Ditch plastic straws
  • Have a 'no circulars' sign on your letterbox
  • Plan your meals and use left overs for lunches or other meals
  • Use the bulk bins or buy bulk through a food co-op
  • Use cloth napkins instead of servettes

There is so much we could all be doing!
 

To Help Our Earth Start Using Re-usable / Plastic Free Products

We've decided it's so important that we all take care of our world that we now sell a range of plastic free products  to help our customers start to make a difference:​
Topics: Enviromental Recycle Reducing Waste
 

Waste Pyramid - Refuse Wastage!

Written by Stephanie on May 30th, 2018.      0 comments

The way things are going I'm worried earth is going to end up like the movie WALL-E, where humans were driven off earth because it was unsustainable to live there anymore.  People were consuming at a fast pace without thought, while the earth was piled up with mountains of rubbish until nothing would grow anymore.  The mountains of rubbish in the movie looked the the recycling piles that are growing in New Zealand right now - have a look at this, we can't ignore it so easily when it's on our back doorstep!
 
Huntly Refuse Centre

We've all be sucked into the consumer age but we need to try and get ourselves out of it for the sake of the planet and future generations!  This first blog in my 'waste pyramid' blogs is about refusing waste.  This is the first thing we need to think about when we purchase items and we need to be asking questions of ourselves before we buy things.  We need to refuse wastage!
 

Before Purchasing Ask Ourselves:

  • Do I really need a new ...?  Can we do without it?
  • Could I get the old one fixed rather than replace it?
  • Could I buy second hand?
  • Could I borrow from someone, if it is something I don't use often?

 

When Purchasing Always:

  • Consider the less packaged option, refuse over-packaged items
  • Choose items that you can get parts for and can be fixed if broken or refilled/reused
  • Refuse single use plastic, styrofoam, etc
  • Refuse plastic! We'll have more on this over plastic free July but some tips are:
    • Choose items in glass, paper, and cardboard over plastic
    • Take your own re-usable coffee cup when getting a takeaway coffee
    • Carry a reusable non-plastic drink bottle
    • Take your own containers to takeway places you know will use plastic or styrofoam
    • Store containers, reusable utensils, straws, etc in your car for meals on the go
    • Choose skin and haircare in bar form, in tin or glass over plastic bottles
    • Always have reusable shopping bags in your car/s and in your handbag
    • Use reusable containers, paper or wax wraps for school/work lunches.
 

Refuse By Using Reusable Products Such As:

Ethique hair and body bars
Joco coffee cups and stainless straws
Reusable shopping/produce/bulk bin bags
Biodegradable dental care products
Honey in glass jars
Honeywrap food wraps

We've decided it's so important that we all take care of our world that we now sell a range of plastic free products  to help our customers start to make a difference.
 
Topics: , Enviromental, Recycle , Reducing Waste
 

Waste Busters Workshop Week 1

Written by Stephanie on May 20th, 2018.      0 comments

I've just joined a 'Waste Busters' weekly workshop with Go Eco in Hamilton.  It's an opportunity to share ideas on creating less waste, having fun making waste-free products and chatting about creating change in our world.  It will cover: food, the garden, cleaning (personal and home), celebrations, work, recreation and travelling.  Can't wait to learn some new tricks!

It is great that most people are recycling their plastics and other recyclables.  But did you know that China are no longer taking other countries recycling?  Many of New Zealand's recycling centres have plastic piling up with no where for it to go!  Have a read of this example in Huntly where the Huntly transfer station is described as 'slums of Mumbai'.  It's a real concern!

So reducing waste is even more important than ever!  

In session one we talked about what waste is and how to avoid it. I love this definition of waste - 'Waste is a resource we haven't figured out what to do with yet'.  It's so true!  If we think outside the square there might be a use for our waste, we just need to stop and think before we throw things out!

This waste pyramid is very helpful to remember when you are thinking about waste.


Waste Pyramid

Refuse:
When purchasing items or food refuse unnecessary packaging and single-use plastic.  For example purchase items in glass or paper rather than plastic.  Do you even need the item in the first place?  Can you do without? 

Reduce:
If you can't avoid waste then try to reduce it as much as possible, can you borrow instead of buy or buy second hand?  Look to get chickens, start a compost bin or/and worm farm to reduce food scrap wastage.

Reuse:
Can you use it for something else?  If you have to buy things in plastic containers, reuse them for storing items and food.  Pass on unwanted clothes and items to others, there are always people in need.  Mabye give old containers, lids, egg cartons, scraps of material, wood, etc to your local Playcentre for childrens craft. 

Recycle:
If you can't refuse, reduce or reuse then recycle.  Use your councils recycle bins, put all your soft plastics in the specified bin at the supermarket.  Remember to use recycle bins when you're out instead of just rubbish bins, if there aren't recycling bins available then please take items home to add to your recycling.

Recover:
You may be able to recover materials or energy from waste.  I just love this story about some retired men in Wanganui turning trash into cash for the community, check it out!

Dispose:
Finally if you are unable to refuse, reduce, reuse, recycle or recover then the final resort is to dispose of the item in the landfill.  The least the better!

I've been thinking lately that if we have the mindset of people in the great depression that would really help our environment, treat everything as a resource to be used to it's full potential and not wasted.

 

To Help Our Earth Start Using Re-usable / Plastic Free Products

We've decided it's so important that we all take care of our world that we now sell a range of plastic free products  to help our customers start to make a difference:​
 
Topics: , Enviromental, Plastic Free , Recycle , Reducing Waste
 

'Bee Sweet and Reuse' Photo Competition!

Written by Stephanie on March 12th, 2017.      0 comments

When we were deciding how to package our honey it had to be glass.  It is so much more healthier, attractive and environmental friendly.  I came across this on Glass for Life facebook page which sums it up quite well - "People trust glass more than any other packaging material to protect the flavor and freshness of their food and drink. And for good reason. Glass is safe and healthy, pure and virtually inert. It’s made of natural ingredients—sand, limestone and soda ash. Glass is 100% recyclable and highly sustainable— unlike most other packaging materials, it can be recycled over and over. And glass says quality without even trying. Glass is life, for all the right reasons."

Lots of our customers reuse our honey jars for jams, chutneys, sauces and for storing items.  Any jars we get back I get together with the local Rural Women group and we make jam to give to the local food bank.  My pantry is full of them for nuts, seeds, etc.  What do you use empty glass jars for?
 

Competition Time!


We would love to see what people do with used glass jars so we have decided to run our photo competition again.  Email us a photo of glass jars (not just Sweetree jars) being used creatively and you could be in to win!  Show us your storage ideas, preserves, anything!

Please note the photos are not being judged on photographic ability but rather the original use of one of our empty honey jars!  You have plenty of time to be creative, the competition will close on 30th June!!

The best photo wins $108 worth of goodies - 500g Sweetree Kirikiriroa honey, the latest Good Magazine (will be Jul/Aug edition by then), Tui Sports massage & body balm & World Organic Luminous Rosehip & Orange Moisturiser.

Second best photos wins - World Organic Luminous Rosehip & Orange Moisturiser worth $48!

The first entry wins the latest Good Magazine!

 
Bee-Sweet-Reuse
 
Here's some ideas from our photographer, Claudia Aalderink who owns The Mandarin Tree art and concept store in Gordonton. There are more ideas on our Pinterest page and some coming on our Facebook page over the the next month or so.
 
bead-in-jar                pumice-in-jar
 
Bee-Sweetree-Reuse-Keepsakes  Bee-Sweetree-Reuse-Pencils

 
Topics: , Enviromental, Recycle
 

Sharing the Surplus

Written by Stephanie on August 5th, 2016.      0 comments

Ever wondered what we do with the empty honey jars we get given back?  The local Rural Women of NZ group I am involved in has a 'Share the Surplus' project. We often see fruit trees laden with fruit and not picked and it seems such a shame when there are so many people struggling to put food on the table.  Our project turns that surplus into preserves!  We collect fruit from people who have surplus fruit on their trees, make preserves and give it to those in need.  

We've recently made strawberry jam (from strawberries we had frozen from summer) and marmalade from citrus that was donated to us.  We then got busy washing and sterilising our jars, cutting and blending fruit, measuring ingredients, stirring pots and filling jars!  Here are some photos of our process:

          Sharing-Surplus-1   Sharing-Surplus1   
Sharing-Surplus2  Sharing-Surplus3

It was fun and we love that we are helping people in our community. The jars have gone to 
Ngaurawahia Community Care Centre to be included in their food bank parcels.  We are going to meet regularly and carry this on, so if you have or know of any surplus fruit or would like to help please contact us.
 
Topics: , Enviromental , Recycle
 

Re-using Sweetree Honey Jars

Written by Stephanie on February 26th, 2016.      0 comments

We use glass jars to store our honey for several reasons.  Apart from the fact that they are more attractive than plastic they are also healthier.  But another reason is that they are recyclable.  They can be put in your recycling bin or you can reuse or repurpose them yourself.  There are some amazing and beautiful ways you can re use glass jars, we have a few ideas on our Pinterest board.   Or you can use them for storing bits and bobs such as food in your pantry, sewing bits in your sewing area, screws in the workshop, etc.  And of course they are perfect for preserving.  

I gave mum a labelling machine for Christmas and she has recently made some bread n butter pickle using her new machine and an old Sweetree Honey jar!  Nothing like home preserves!
 
bread n butter pickle
Topics: , About Sweetree , Enviromental, Recycle
 
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