NATURE'S CARERS: The Junction Cafe owner Melissa Smart and food attendant Lanae Jarrett are going environmentally friendly with paper straws and recyclable food containers.
NATURE'S CARERS: The Junction Cafe owner Melissa Smart and food attendant Lanae Jarrett are going environmentally friendly with paper straws and recyclable food containers. Glen Porteous

Last straw for plastics to protect environment

SAVING the environment one plastic straw at a time was the message The Junction Cafe owner Melissa Smart wanted to get across in her own personal war on waste.

Always having the environment in mind and wanting to help protect it the best she can, Ms Smart has started to make her cafe environmentally friendly.

"I've been watching the ABC's War on Waste program and saw how wasteful we have become and when I viewed the clip online of the turtle with a straw up its nose I wanted to do something about it,” she said.

"When I recently bought the cafe, I wanted to try to recycle everything I can.

"Paper straws are environmentally friendly and even the coffee cups are recyclable.”

War on Waste focuses on the impact and solutions to material waste in Australia and inspired Ms Smart to engage with helping the environment.

"I don't have any plastic straws any more and use paper ones and I don't sell poppers any more or fruit boxes as well,” she said.

"The takeaway boxes are now paper ones and trying to really cut back on plastic usage.

"For the coffee here we use beans, not pods, and with the leftover grinds we fill up a customer's bucket and they take it home for garden fertiliser.”

Ms Smart would like to see other businesses get on board with recycling to help the environment however best they could.

"It doesn't take much to recycle and it will help our environment at the same time,” Ms Smart said.