5 Easy Ways to Stop Killing Turtles With the Food You Eat

Our impact on the environment is an important issue, so here are a few tips on sustainable eating in York from our Environment and Ethics Network! 


5 Easy Ways to Stop Killing Turtles With the Food You Eat: Make Your Eating Habits More Sustainable - York Edition! 


So, we’ve got, at most, 30 years of soil fertility left in the UK under current farming practices. Plastic is everywhere, there are multiple trash islands in the sea and birds’ stomachs are filled with plastic packaging, so here’s a nice, light-hearted article about how to be slightly better than the absolute worst- (obviously, this all means relatively little without abolishing capitalism and all structures of domination but y’know, we do what we can). 


As a new student, most likely in a new city, and climate catastrophe surrounding us, you may be asking yourself - what can I do? How can I make my life more sustainable? A key area of this is of course food, so hopefully this article will give you some helpful advice on how to eat more sustainably in York. Obviously, these actions alone won’t solve the climate crisis, but we’ve all got to do what we can! 


  1. Zero waste food shops 

Now, I’m sure we’ve all seen cool FB videos of shops that shout about how they use zero plastic!! It all looks so lovely, but these places are often not in a particularly accessible location. Well, luckily for you, they actually do exist and York has a few! So, without further ado, here’s a selection of them! 


  • Bishy Weigh - absolutely zero waste. It can be a bit more pricey but if you’re really dedicated to that zero waste lifestyle then I’d fully recommend checking them out!

  • Nut Centre - they’re cool and they sell nuts. If you love nuts, this is the place for you. 

  • Alligator Wholefoods - as shocked as I was to learn that it’s not actually run by alligators, this is a great place for, well, wholefoods.

  • Shambles Market - really great locally grown, and plastic- free, fruit and veg. I can’t hype these stalls up enough.


  1. Yourcafe - Tang Hall Community Centre (Weds at 11am - 2pm)

Tired of paying for food? Has student finance destroyed you? Have you spent all of your student loan in Salvos? (Poor choice, love yourself). Well, luckily for you, here you can get free food, and donate as you feel, and reduce food waste. All the food here is stuff that would’ve been thrown out by supermarkets and, trust me, nothing will make your new flat mates love you more than coming home with 3 giant cakes that morrisons have decided to throw out. 


  1. Grow your own! 

  • The Gardening society currently have carrots, onion, garlic, rosemary, celeriac and cucumber in the ground plus pear, apple and plum trees. This is a great society, not just because they’re my friends but they’re great people. They’re really welcoming and it only costs £5 to join, so you’re basically making money. (Plus they love a good social). When the apocalypse comes, you’ll have to learn how to grow your own food anyway so you may as well start now. 

  • College gardens - we know freshers might not always want to spend their time gardening out in the cold when you could be out partying, but there are a few easy things like herbs that you can grow with little effort. Also, what’s better than spending a day hungover in the garden surrounded by nature? Get a few of your new flatmates together and get growing those herbs. 


  1. Freegan Living! 

Also known as ‘dumpster diving’. Maybe this sounds a bit grim at first, but in an age of student debt and massive food waste by all the major supermarkets, who can say no to perfectly fresh and clean free food that’s being thrown out for absolutely no reason? My personal suggestion is Iceland- particularly good for bread. If you’re looking for a fun freshers’ activity grab some of your new friends and go dive in a dumpster together. Trust me, nothing can bring you closer than going through trash together! 


  1. SCOOP 

If you’re new to York and not too sure where everything is, (and maybe getting muddy and being cold all day just isn’t for you), then Scoop is the way forward! They’ve got pretty much everything you could imagine and most of it is plastic- free, cheap and easily accessible- (it’s in Wentworth, which seems like it’s about 12 miles away, but I promise it’s not). They do weekly fruit and veg boxes and you can BYOC to fill up on all the herbs and spices, carbs and grains you could imagine. There’s also an amazing range of vegan snacks that are much cheaper than at the supermarket. What’s more, it’s all volunteer- run, so you can join! Their opening hours vary, so check their FB page to make sure you’re not hiking all the way to Wentworth for no reason. 


This is only a small selection of ways to make your eating habits more sustainable. There are many more shops in York that are working to improve their sustainability, so have a look around, go outside, leave the sweaty clubs and search for sustainable and plastic- free joy instead! Or just go to the pub, whatever makes you happy.