If you speak to the majority of people on what they would change about their home at the moment we suspect their answer would be ‘to cut back on costs’. We all know the story, the price of living is rising and wages just don’t match! Being (relatively) young we don’t remember a time when you could fill your shopping trolley for £30 or when household bills were even ‘affordable’’ so we have had to adapt to living within our means rather quickly!
Within Smart Consumer we aim to get to grips with the nitty gritty of running a household efficiently, without stretching you to the max but still maintaining a healthy mind, body and environment. We examine convenience and look at whether this is worth the premium you pay for it. And we look at what are those energy sapping devices plugged into each and every socket around the house.
I don’t know about you, but I often find buying satsumas, mandarins or clementines a bit of a lottery – sometimes they are delicious and juicy and the kids just romp through them. At other times they are disappointing, tough and destined to a future languishing in the fruit bowl unloved, ignored and ultimately deteriorating.Read more »
When MPs announced in January that they were introducing a new latte levy, you may remember that our reaction was one of utter dismay. See our blog post of 5 January – Disposable Coffee Cups | The Full Picture.Read more »
In the UK alone, we consume 80 boxed million eggs every Easter. That generates almost 4,370 tonnes of cardboard waste – which in our view is entirely unnecessary! So here are our top tips on minimising your impact on the environment this year, and your local authority’s recycling budget!Read more »
So it seems that the world is now committed to reducing the amount of plastic we use in our every day lives. For the sake of our planet and in particular our oceans, the consensus appears to be that things need to change. There is big pressure on the supermarkets, Government and manufacturers to make this easier on all of us by innovating, legislating and just making it all a little bit easier to do since ultimately they are the ones that profit from our high consumption convenience driven lifestyles. But there is no doubt that we all need to adjust our behaviour.Read more »
So what a delight to start a new year with the environment so high up on everyone’s agenda. Whatever you thought of the Prime Minister’s speech on the 25 year Environmental Plan, the fact that she felt the need to make it, means that the Government think there’s an appetite for matters environmental at the moment, which is good news indeed. The Attenborough factor has to be high on the list reasons as to why this has suddenly popped into the public consciousness but that’s fine – he’s a legend. However, we think that in order to tackle the problem, we need to have a very long hard look at how we got to where we are in the first place.Read more »
So disposable coffee cups annoy just about everybody, not just Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall. As a nation we use 7 million disposable coffee cups EVERY day – that is 2.5 billion a year. That is just plain crazy and it doesn’t take a genius to work out the impact that is going to have on the environment. And don’t get us started about the lids, the stirrers and those gargantuan plastic smoothie cups!Read more »
Environmental and resource issues aside, the humble Christmas card is surely one of the greatest traditions of the season – sometimes an annual communication with a friend or loved one that might otherwise see contact lost forever, a time to reconnect, update and just bring a smile in a way that social media never can – it has to be worth the effort…for me at least!Read more »
There can be little doubt that a Shepherds Pie is a family favourite guaranteed to result in clear plates! It is literally the only dish I have cooked over the years that all of my daughter’s friends have scoffed without a blink of an eye! Even the ones that have highly tuned microscopic onion detectors tuck in! It is so worth the effort to get clean plates and full tums, and of course no wasted portions for a change!Read more »
Autumn is turning, winter is on the horizon! We are all putting off turning our heating on until we absolutely have to! And if you are an energy customer of the ‘big six’ you will no doubt have had a letter over the course of the last year giving you details of a forthcoming increase in their prices! It’s not much to look forward to is it!Read more »
Fancy doing something a bit different with the glut of green tomatoes you have left? Give this tried and tested green tomato cake a go! If like me you are a fan of sticky spiced cakes you will love this. Given the seal of approval from my work colleagues, even converting those who don’t believe vegetables belong in a cake (although most class tomatoes as a salad or a fruit!) gave it rave reviews. It is after all, quite delicious.Read more »