Today, in celebration of Environmenstrual Week we’ve launched a new campaign to help bring plastic-free periods to the high-street.
It’s currently a #BloodyShame
With 86% of the British public being worried about the impact of plastic pollution, and one pack of period pads containing the same amount of plastic as 5 carrier bags. We think people deserve choice when it comes to how they manage their periods.
Period products are the 5th most common item found on Europe’s beaches - more widespread than single-use coffee cups, cutlery or straws. Most of these products find their way into our waterways and onto our beaches. This is because they’ve been incorrectly disposed of - flushed down the toilet.
Almost half of British people with periods buy their period products in the supermarket. Yet 3 of the 9 main UK retailers don’t stock a single plastic-free period product. This includes Morrisons, one of The Big 4! Of those who do stock plastic-free products, none stock the full range (plastic-free disposables, menstrual cups, period pants, reusable pads) in all their stores. A recent UK survey told us that people who haven’t switched to #plasticfreeperiods say that their main barrier was the lack of plastic-free products where they shop.
We think it’s a #BloodyShame that supermarkets aren’t offering more plastic-free options. Especially, since most of them have signed up to support the UK Plastics Pact – an industry-wide initiative which says it aims to reduce avoidable plastic waste. Clearly the Plastics Pact is not holding up too well in UK supermarkets aisles!
We think that people with periods deserve to be able to menstruate without involving single-use plastic and they deserve it wherever they live. Wherever they shop.
The campaign is backed by a number of high-profile sportswomen. Including Team GB Surf Ambassador and Love Island star Laura Crane, record-breaking paddleboarder Cal Major, world-record holding free-diver Tanya Streeter and cold-water swimmer Sophie Hellyer. They are championing the cause and raising awareness of the hidden plastics in period products.
Natalie Fee, Founder of City to Sea said: "We lead busy lives and it is a bloody shame that we're not being given choices when it comes to buying our period products on the go. We want to put an end to hidden plastics in period products, they're totally unnecessary and choking our oceans"
Help us turn the tide
This Environmenstrual Week (12th – 19th October) we’re calling on UK retailers to start stocking plastic-free period products. And we need your help! Join us by becoming a period detective and finding out what’s available in your local supermarket. Share your findings on social media and tag the retailer so they know you’re onto them. We want to hear which retailers are supporting their customers to go plastic-free, and which need to up their game.
If you find plastic-free products
Upload a picture or video clip of your findings, tagging @citytosea_, the supermarket and using the hashtag a #BloodySuccess! If you find plastic-free options, but not the ones you wanted then let the supermarket know!
If you don’t find any plastic-free options
Upload a picture or video clip of you with the hashtag a #BloodyShame. Tagging the supermarket to tell them what you were after.
What are we asking retailers to do?
With your help we’re calling on UK supermarkets to increase the availability and range of plastic free period products in all of their stores.
Thanks to the work of many Environmenstrual Coalition members (like Ella Daish who ran this petition), some supermarkets are starting to get the message. Also, this August Sainsburys announced that their own-brand tampons would no longer include plastic applicators. This past year alone has seen various retailers add Hey Girls, Bloom & Nora, DAME, Natracare, TOTM, Mooncup and Flux Undies to their shelves.
We want to see ALL supermarkets offering a FULL RANGE of choice to people with periods. In ALL of their stores. So, get onto your local high-street to highlight which stores are a #BloodySuccess and which are a #BloodyShame!