Who needs single-use fish bags and throw-away carrier bags for transporting fish?

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Do you just accept that plastic fish bags, paper bags and carrier bags are all part of the hobby? Just the way you get fish home? Well, there are ways and means of reducing waste from transporting fish and some shops and hobbyists are striving to go the extra mile.

Words: Steve Baker

For many years I’ve carried an insulated box around in my car on the off-chance that I’ll see an aquatics shop and buy some fish. If I’m purposely going to buy fish I’ll take two.

Not only does this offer a better solution to transporting fish (darker and more insulated) than the fore mentioned ‘bag in a bag in a bag’ method but it also cuts the need for brown paper bags and carrier bags (therefore cutting waste).

Though I do clean, dry and re-use my fish bags (for storing filter media, giving away plants and occasionally taking fish to auction) I haven’t come up with a way to eliminate them all together.

A past employer of mine has though. Ward’s nurseries and Garden centre of Dronfield, Derbyshire is pushing ahead with re-usable transporting containers.

There’s no technical innovation here, just some thought, and it really counts. Aquatics manager, Gareth Massey, came up with the idea of selling re-usable transport containers and it’s being received well by most customers.

“In order to reduce the need for plastic bags we are now selling reusable containers,” says Gareth. “They come with a tight-fitting lid and secure carry handle. Not only will they help reduce plastic waste but they are also ideal for catfish which will tear bags.”

Three sizes of the clear plastic containers are offered from just 75p each which can be used every time you frequent an aquatics shop.

I’ll always be carrying my insulated box around with me and now I’m on the look-out for some of Gareth’s tubs to lessen waste further.