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In this day and age, finally, more and more people are realizing that all that plastic, paper, and everything else that encases the items we buy, ends up in a landfill somewhere. Let’s face it, this amount of plastic waste is not good for the environment or anyone else. Many businesses are coming around to this idea. But a few seem stuck in the past.

The “Egregious Packaging” online community exists to name and shame companies that insist on massive paper and plastic waste. We got in touch with Kathryn Kellogg from Goingzerowaste.com to learn more. So get comfortable as you scroll through, upvote your favorites, and be sure to comment your thoughts below. 

#1

Ordered 5 Nail Polishes From Amazon

Ordered 5 Nail Polishes From Amazon

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Rebekah Fuentes
Community Member
2 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Always choose same day shipping and 9/10 arrive in different boxes.

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#2

Amazon Put Air Pillows In With My Shipment Of Bubble Wrap

Amazon Put Air Pillows In With My Shipment Of Bubble Wrap

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Bored Panda got in touch with Kathryn Kellogg, founder of Goingzerowaste.com and she was kind enough to answer some of our questions. Firstly, we wanted to know what exactly is the harm in waste from packaging. 

“The materials used to package our items all have an environmental impact. For example, to make plastic, the raw material crude oil must be extracted from the earth in an unsustainable manner, usually through fracking. Then it must undergo processing in a fossil fuel-powered factory where it is transformed into moldable plastic. Next, it must be shipped to warehouses or stores, which typically requires gas-powered trucks to transport.”

#4

Since Oranges Don't Have A Natural Packaging

Since Oranges Don't Have A Natural Packaging

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#6

I Was Worried When I Noticed I Had A Damaged Package Outside. Turns Out It Wasn't An Issue

I Was Worried When I Noticed I Had A Damaged Package Outside. Turns Out It Wasn't An Issue

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“All these factors have a high carbon footprint. Not to mention the end of life of our packaging, especially plastic, is another thing to consider. Only 5-6% of plastic is recycled while the rest ends up in our environment or in landfills. So when we can reduce packaging waste, I think it's important to do so,” she shared. 

#7

For F**k's Sake

For F**k's Sake

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#8

These "Biosmart" Straws That Come In A Plastic Bag, With Smaller Plastic Bags Inside For Each Individual Color

These "Biosmart" Straws That Come In A Plastic Bag, With Smaller Plastic Bags Inside For Each Individual Color

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Šimon Špaček
Community Member
2 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Honestly, paper straws are absolute nonsense anyway. I'm 100% sure that the only reason why there were outcries about plastic straws it that DuPOnt lost their patent for plastic straws. Then there were those awful paper straws (we all remember then, absolutely useless things that fell apart in any drink) and now we have paper straws with with PFAS to make them waterproof. PFAS is made by DuPont and it may be little bit toxic. Oh, and PFAS is not biodegradable.

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Given the downsides, we were curious to hear her opinion on why companies still insisted on acting this way. “Some of it has to do with cost: It’s cheaper to buy virgin plastic than recycled, for example. But another factor for brands is keeping up with trends and marketing. Brands want to be unique and catch your eye, and one way they can do that is through packaging.”

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#12

Some Sort Of Chip My Coworker Received

Some Sort Of Chip My Coworker Received

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Natasha Arruda
Community Member
2 months ago (edited) DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

I wonder how much is so that someone cannot easily lose a small but potentially expensive package. Not an excuse, obviously, but I wonder if it's part of it.

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“Sometimes, this leads to excessive, over-the-top choices. Also, if they are selling their products through a third party, like Amazon, sometimes they don’t have control over how their products are shipped and packaged,” she shared with Bored Panda. One reason to keep shaming companies is the simple fact that they tend to just not keep their own word. Despite pledges to reduce plastic waste, every single big company that has made these promises has also failed to actually implement them. The Coca-Cola Company, Nestle SA, and PepsiCo are some of the largest plastic polluters in the world. 

#13

Literally W H Y

Literally W H Y

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Molly Whuppie
Community Member
2 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

I've seen this in previous BP posts and people have said it is because they are microwavable, and the plastic helps with the steaming or something, but you don't need the plastic wrap to microwave a potato, sweet or otherwise. They microwave just fine on their own without any kind of covering.

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#14

My Chef Saved $2.50/300 Units If They Come Individually Wrapped. So I Spent The First Hour Of My Shift Unwrapping Them

My Chef Saved $2.50/300 Units If They Come Individually Wrapped. So I Spent The First Hour Of My Shift Unwrapping Them

LittleBitCrunchy Report

Many of these same companies actually obstruct attempts by governmental and NGO efforts to limit plastic waste. So the excessive plastic seen here is just one symptom of a larger issue, where large companies are willing to flood the planet with disposable plastic just to get a slightly better bottom line. Naming and shaming is the least any of us can do. 

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#16

This Nail Polish Probably Felt Like It Pulled Up In A Rolls-Royce

This Nail Polish Probably Felt Like It Pulled Up In A Rolls-Royce

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#17

17-Inch Box For A 2-Inch Item, Including Whole Printed Spiel That It Was “Thoughtfully Packaged” To “Reduce Impact”

17-Inch Box For A 2-Inch Item, Including Whole Printed Spiel That It Was “Thoughtfully Packaged” To “Reduce Impact”

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#18

This Tin Of Individually Wrapped Assorted Jelly Beans I Got As A Gift

This Tin Of Individually Wrapped Assorted Jelly Beans I Got As A Gift

LittleBitCrunchy Report

So we wanted to know what else people could do at home. “A simple swap everyone can do to cut down on plastic waste is just ordering less takeout. Takeout containers often come in plastic, and with smaller plastic packets (think ketchup pouches, soy sauce holders, etc.) and can be hard to recycle. Always check with your local guidelines first of course before wishcycling these items. Going to a restaurant or eating at home more is a simple way to reduce plastic waste and use up what’s in your fridge. Try incorporating one or two more home-cooked meals into your week than you already do: It’s okay to prep it ahead of time too, if that’s easier.”

#19

47,785ml Of Packaging For 5.4ml Of Product. These Boxes All Came From The Same Warehouse Together

47,785ml Of Packaging For 5.4ml Of Product. These Boxes All Came From The Same Warehouse Together

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Nannychachi
Community Member
2 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

I save the brown paper and use it for many different things--- for grandkids to color on (it's big enough to have them lay down and draw their outline and have them color on clothes etc), gift wrap, cut patterns for sewing projects, drawer/shelf liner and put in the top of the bags to absorb liquid when I vacuum seal meats.

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#20

Ordered A Wood Comb To Avoid Using Plastic. No Luck From A Company Ironically Named Healthandyoga.com

Ordered A Wood Comb To Avoid Using Plastic. No Luck From A Company Ironically Named Healthandyoga.com

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#21

This Box Was For One Little Ds Game

This Box Was For One Little Ds Game

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Natasha Arruda
Community Member
2 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

As I said previously, I wonder how much of this is to attempt to prevent easy loss during shipping. I imagine that a game seller might regularly be incurring a "game lost in transit" issue if they are not in a game case and so small and misplace-able. Or even easily pocketed.

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“You can reach out to companies and brands about their packaging. Write them an email expressing what you love about their product, then go into their packaging and explain why it’s a problem. Maybe they’re using excessive packaging, or it’s hard to recycle plastic packaging. Whatever it is, be honest. You may inspire them to change their packaging for the better!”

#22

Forgot About This Gem...this Was 12 Years Ago But I Believe That Was About An 18-In Ruler And It Was Absolutely The Only Thing In That Box

Forgot About This Gem...this Was 12 Years Ago But I Believe That Was About An 18-In Ruler And It Was Absolutely The Only Thing In That Box

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#23

Not Sure What The Point Of The Plastic Wrapping Is… What A Waste

Not Sure What The Point Of The Plastic Wrapping Is… What A Waste

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#24

A Presentation Case For A Single Tube Of Toothpaste. It’s Recyclable, Forgetting That They Could Just Not

A Presentation Case For A Single Tube Of Toothpaste. It’s Recyclable, Forgetting That They Could Just Not

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While paper waste is downright annoying, plastic waste is considerably worse. After all, paper can and will break down over time, as anyone who has left a cardboard box in the rain can attest to. Plastic, on the other hand, generally refuses to cooperate and will be around for a long, long time

Interestingly, even though it does appear that the combination of shopping and excessive packaging would be the main culprit in terms of plastic waste, this is not actually the case. Packaging only accounts for 5% of municipal solid waste in the United States. While the examples here are extreme, it’s worth noting that many companies have adopted more eco-friendly packaging. 

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#25

Seen At Target - 2 Apple Slices X 6 Plastic Bags, In A Plastic Box

Seen At Target - 2 Apple Slices X 6 Plastic Bags, In A Plastic Box

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#26

Can't Be Too Careful!

Can't Be Too Careful!

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Natasha Arruda
Community Member
2 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

No, no, that's for YOUR protection. It's such an amazing picker-upper that if not well separated, it will suck the moisture from the air, from people around it, the great lakes would deplete within days.

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#27

All This Space Just For A Scoop

All This Space Just For A Scoop

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Unfortunately, a lot of plastic waste is generated by the sorts of things that we don’t see. It’s a lot easier to shame a business for wrapping bananas in plastic bags than it is to call out agricultural companies for the sorts of irrigation pipes they use. Of course, this doesn't mean that companies should be let off the hook just because someone else is polluting more. 

#28

Every Damn Fork Was Individually Wrapped

Every Damn Fork Was Individually Wrapped

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TBS
Community Member
2 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Mine were, too. I hated it, but it is to keep the metal from getting tiny scratches and to keep them shiny. I only realized it when comparing my old set to a new set.

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#29

Last Time It Came In An Envelope

Last Time It Came In An Envelope

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Lennart
Community Member
2 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

An activation code for sleeper agents? I think the damage they do outweighs the inefficient shipping. /jk

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#30

Just Got A Pair Of Headphones, Why Is The Box So Big

Just Got A Pair Of Headphones, Why Is The Box So Big

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Ken Beattie
Community Member
2 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

A better question is if you're going to pack it "safely" why is it jammed in a corner with packing on two sides? If the packing is for protection it's not working. Anyway, I'd guess this is as case of the shop doesn't have smaller boxes available. That's not an excuse for a company like amazon, but it's not surprising if it's bought from a smaller electronics shop. I worked as a storeman for a year or so. We would get our stock in bigger boxes (like 50 items in them). Then of course people would order just a couple items. So we had a room with dozens of the original big boxes and we'd try to re-use the ones that are the closest size. Sometimes a box like the example above was the closest option.

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Some might argue that, due to recycling, plastic waste isn’t, ultimately, that bad. In a perfect world, they would be right. However, in reality, roughly 9% of all the plastic we produce is recycled, the rest is incinerated or just waiting around to biodegrade, a process that will take way too long to even consider. 

The good news is that biodegradable plastics do exist. However, they aren’t the silver bullet many of us would prefer. For one, they may produce methane gas when decomposing, which is sort of counterproductive on the face of things. Still, they at least can be gotten rid of, while traditional plastic might outlive the pyramids. 

#31

Hannaford Supermarket Hoping To Sell You *a* Donut

Hannaford Supermarket Hoping To Sell You *a* Donut

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Lotekguy
Community Member
2 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

With that much packaging, they should give free refills on your next visit.

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#32

“Eco-Box” Wrapped In Plastic

“Eco-Box” Wrapped In Plastic

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Kira Okah
Community Member
2 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

So that they cn be safely transported in bulk most likely. If one of those boxes breaks in transport and they weren't wrapped up, that would quite likely write off the entire pallet.

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#34

"Gift Of Nothing" Is The Gift Of Egregious Packaging

"Gift Of Nothing" Is The Gift Of Egregious Packaging

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#36

Pixy Stix

Pixy Stix

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Nikole
Community Member
2 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

The best kind of produce. I still remember grandma’s Pixy Stix salads.

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#38

I Was Delighted When Ca Started Free Lunches At School. Early Dismissal Means I'm Seeing It For The First Time And Am Now Horrified

I Was Delighted When Ca Started Free Lunches At School. Early Dismissal Means I'm Seeing It For The First Time And Am Now Horrified

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Bookworm
Community Member
2 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

This is a problem in every school district and other institutional cafeteria in the U.S. If they buy anything in bulk, or want to serve anything pre-assembled like a salad, or offer anything to be taken out of the room like the sandwiches and snacks my college cafeteria sold between meal hours, it's going to be delivered to them in plastic. The way to make a difference here is to target the distribution companies, because the schools have no better options.

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#39

So Much Damn Packaging For Only 42 Pills. The Sheets Were In The Smaller Boxes Which Were Then In The Big Box

So Much Damn Packaging For Only 42 Pills. The Sheets Were In The Smaller Boxes Which Were Then In The Big Box

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#40

All This Plastic For Just 5 Toothbrush Heads

All This Plastic For Just 5 Toothbrush Heads

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#41

This Briefcase Sized Toothbrush Head Pack

This Briefcase Sized Toothbrush Head Pack

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Bookworm
Community Member
2 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Guessing this is CostCo, same as the SD card, and for the same reason

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#42

The Box And What It Was Used For. Ordered From An Ink Supplier

The Box And What It Was Used For. Ordered From An Ink Supplier

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#44

This Potato I Found For Sale At Walmart Earlier. It’s Just A Regular Potato. You Can Microwave Those Anyways

This Potato I Found For Sale At Walmart Earlier. It’s Just A Regular Potato. You Can Microwave Those Anyways

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Happy Homemaker
Community Member
2 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

You’re supposed to microwave it in the plastic wrap. You’ll hear almost a squeal noise during the cooking process. I think it’s 7 minutes. When it’s done, use tongs, or oven mitts to put it on a plate and remove the plastic. Believe it or not, it does work. You get a fluffy baked potato. I had a friend make me one.

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#46

Individually Packaged Slices Of Bread

Individually Packaged Slices Of Bread

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#47

Why? For What Reason? To What Possible Advantage?

Why? For What Reason? To What Possible Advantage?

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Kira Okah
Community Member
2 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Probably to prevent degredation by light. Any sparkling wine not in an opaque bottle is wrapped in cellophane to absorb uv, likely the same here.

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#48

Why Individually Package Them In Plastic 2 Packs When They're Already Wrapped??

Why Individually Package Them In Plastic 2 Packs When They're Already Wrapped??

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#49

Too Much Package For 3 ‘Gourmet’ Cookies. Found At Sams Club

Too Much Package For 3 ‘Gourmet’ Cookies. Found At Sams Club

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Kira Okah
Community Member
2 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

These are standardised bakery display boxes available in bulk. What they should be doing is putting more cookies in them

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#50

Somehow Both Too Much And Not Enough

Somehow Both Too Much And Not Enough

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Kira Okah
Community Member
2 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

No. Seeing the size of the bowl and the box, this is in no way "too much" packaging. This box is too small, full stop. It needs to have enough space around it to cushion the sides, and the whole box needs to be filled to prevent movement and jostling of contents. This box is not big enough and the wrapping wholly inadequate.

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