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Plastic news

May 2019

Drastic Plastic at Inverness Science Fair Family Day

A team of Drastic Plastic / TBI volunteers, supported by Freya and Duncan from Highland Council's Waste Aware team, manned a stall at the culminating event of the Inverness Science Festival - the Family Day of fun and information held at Inverness Leisure Centre last Saturday 11 May.

In thanking the volunteers, not only for being there on the day but for all the work that went into preparing the displays for the stand, Penny commented

"I think it was well received. The children seemed to enjoy the activities and there was some good chat with both children and adults about plastic recycling, waste and alternatives."

Alaine Macdonald, one of the helpers and TBI's Membership Secretary, has written a personal account of the day

Drastic Plastic at the Inverness Science  Saturday 11th May 2019

"All afternoon the hall at Inverness Leisure Centre was thronged with people obviously enjoying themselves.  The various stands were well spread out with enough floor space for people to move around freely.

"The Drastic Plastic stall had a good position opposite the entrance.  As I entered the hall Lesley waved to me and I immediately recognized Julie’s clever ‘Drastic Plastic’ sign which she had conjured up with plastic bottle tops. 

"We had three tables arranged in a horse shoeshape creating three sections:  Freya and Duncan, from the Inverness Council, were answering questions on recycling and people were sorting ‘waste’ into blue and green bins.  Children seemed to enjoy ‘cleaning the beach’ on the middle table with its large tray representing the seashore.  There were toy sea creatures, beach shingle, shells, dried seaweedand lots of ‘rubbish’ for younger children to sort.  They were also encouraged to explain what damage it was doing.  The third section had the Decomposition Quiz (how long it takes for different things to decompose) which was popular with older children.  Adults also found it interesting.  Several people took copies away with them. There were also two baskets – one containing items made with plastic and the other one containing something similar which was not made of plastic.  Children were encouraged to find a corresponding item in each basket.  Next to this table was a large upright display screen on which were attached disposable items and containers.  Each disposable item had a red string leading to a more eco-friendly alternative.  A bunch of plastic bags hung there forlornly offering no alternative!

"It seems that we were well received and will be invited back next year.  Time seemed to go quickly while we were busy and I enjoyed it all immensely although it was very tiring,especially for those who had arrived early to set up the stand well before opening time."

Alaine Macdonald







March 2019

Milk dispenser up and running at Black Isle Dairy

Black Isle Dairy has recently installed a milk dispenser in its 'Honesty Shed' at Rootfield Farm, which means that their whole milk is no longer supplied in single use plastic bottles.  Customers can now choose between bringing their own bottles or buying glass bottles for £2.  The machine will dispense either 500ml or 1 litre, and without the expense of the plastic bottles the price has been reduced to 50p and £1 respectively.  Easy to follow instructions are provided, and at the moment payment is by coins only, but a contactless card facility is also due to be installed.

Black Isle Dairy's semi-skimmed milk (still in plastic bottles), their excellent and very different yogurt and wide range of ice creams are also available in the Honesty Shed, as well as sausages and pork from Black Isle Pork along the road and eggs from Ged Eggs at Meikle Geddes.

Nick Mackenzie, who runs Black Isle Dairy, said of his decision to install the dispenser

  "We decided to install the milk vending machine to allow us to cut down on single use plastic packaging and supply milk in reusable glass bottles without setting up a milk delivery service. It also allows us to provide fresh milk straight from the cows which has been pasteurised but is otherwise unaltered and have direct contact with our customers."  

Nick deserves the thanks of all who are concerned about the environmental damage caused by single-use plastics for this enterprising and welcome innovation.










Welcome and overview  -  September 2018

Welcome to the Drastic Plastic Webpage and to the newly formed TBI Plastic Waste Group. We consist of members who have got together and agreed that in the wake of the current horrors associated with Plastic Waste, we need to raise awareness of the issues and take action here on the Black Isle. 

A successful inaugural ‘Open’ Meeting was held in June and those who attended had the opportunity to discuss some of the issues, voice their concerns and suggest how they thought we could tackle the subject. Issues discussed were:

  • What’s Drastic About Plastic
  • How is it affecting the environment and all of us
  • Ways we can make a difference on a personal level and collectively as TBI

From those discussions, four main strands for action emerged:

  • Publicity: to raise awareness
  • Education: so that people can make informed choices
  • Campaigning 
  • Website Information

These will be developed in future meetings and activities.

Penny Hepburn        info@aquavisiononline.com


Aims and Objectives

Transition Black Isle           The Drastic Plastic Group


The Drastic Plastic Group has been established to raise awareness of the issues surrounding plastic waste within the Black Isle. This will then enable members & businesses within the community to make their own informed choices as to the way they purchase, use, recycle or dispose of their plastic waste.


  1. To highlight the indiscriminate disposal of plastic waste either by the general public or by businesses.
  2. To educate the community in the dangers of plastic waste to both human and animal health and to equip the community with knowledge of suitable and sustainable alternatives.
  3. To encourage local manufacturing businesses and outlets to end the production and use of single use plastic in their packaging and to provide better labelling on non single use packaging regarding the items' correct form of disposal.
  4. To provide accurate, up to date, relevant information on all forms of plastic and their available alternatives.


  1. Holding publicity events such as a beach clean and plastic waste sculpture competition.
  2. The delivery of informative and educational talks from public sector recycling organisations and other appropriate professionals. Holding workshops on ‘up cycling’ and making non plastic alternatives to packaging. The provision of information leaflets to be given out at events such as the Black Isle Community Markets.
  3. Letter writing and campaigning to relevant businesses requesting their co-operation and support in the reduction or phasing out of single use plastic packaging and for the provision of accurate plastic recycling labelling information. 
  4. The creation of a Drastic Plastic section on the Transition Black Isle website, with appropriate links to the wider Web. Relevant access to & interaction with appropriate social media such as Facebook and Twitter. The formation of an online Directory of local outlets, who are providing suitable alternatives to plastic packaging.

 Penny Hepburn: September 2018


Campaigning links


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Forthcoming Events…

Wednesday 28 October
NA      Ethical Consumer Week 2020
Thursday 29 October
NA      Ethical Consumer Week 2020
Friday 30 October
NA      Ethical Consumer Week 2020
Saturday 31 October
10:00 North Kessock Community Market CANCELLED
Thursday 5 November
10:00 2020 Cycling Scotland Conference
Saturday 7 November
10:00 Fortrose Community Market CANCELLED
Wednesday 11 November
17:30 SEDA Solar Seminar series - 2 Photo-electric Advancements
Saturday 14 November
11:00 Cromarty Community Market CANCELLED

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We are part of the rapidly expanding worldwide Transition Towns movement. The Black Isle is a peninsula of about 100 sq miles ENE of Inverness in Scotland, UK.