A trailblazing Eastbourne butcher is the first and perhaps only in the area to go completely plastic-free.
John Clarke-Semmens, of JCS Meats and Provisions, has achieved plastic-free champion status for his continued use of and promotion of non-plastic wrappings for his fresh food.
He said he was inspired to make a change to help the environment, “The state of the plastic waste flowing around is absolutely ridiculous.
“It’s flowing into our oceans at a ridiculous rate. Some of it gets recycled but a lot of it just gets dumped somewhere.”
John said, “In the fresh meat industry normally everything’s wrapped in plastic.
“The amount of plastic wrapping I think is over the top. On one joint you can have plastic on plastic on a tray which is wrapped in plastic. There’s no need for it.
“I thought if I did it I could show others this is the way to go. Hopefully it will catch on.”
John now uses what he calls peach paper, as well as other resistent meat papers, to wrap his products.
He says it keeps the quality of the meat and is a suitable hygienic alternative for plastic.
The cheeses he sells are now wrapped in wax paper. He doesn’t use plastic carrier bags but offers paper ones to customers. John has been a butcher for 25 years and launched his business four years ago, working on it full time since last year.
He said, “I’m doing everything as traditional as I can to try and bring on the old skills.
“It’s trying to reeducate people in ways of shopping, you don’t have to buy vast amounts, you can buy less but quality goods.”
You can find JCS Meats at East Dean market on Wednesdays, Seaford on Fridays, and in markets around the area – including Eastbourne, Peacehaven, Ninfield, and Etchingham.