3 billion single-use nappies end up in landfill in the UK every year

Reusable Nappy Week Kicks Off

TotsBots, the UK’s leading reusable nappy brand, has joined forces with the NappyAlliance to urge UK parents to give reusable nappies a try during Reusable Nappy Week, which kicks off today (19-24 April).  Offering 20% off select reusable nappies and accessories from www.totsbots.com, TotsBots are offering an incentive for parents to give reusables a try to dramatically cut back on Co2 emissions and the 6.2 million tonnes of waste each year.

What is Reusable Nappy Week?

Reusable Nappy Week is an annual event organised by the reusable nappy industry with the support of NGOs and local government which shows parents and caregivers how easy it is to change from disposable nappies and reduce their part in the nearly 3 billion single-use nappies that end up in landfill or incineration in the UK every year. Now in its 25th year, Reusable Nappy Week will take place in 2021 between 19th and 25th April with the theme “Choose to Reuse”.

Brands, manufacturers, retailers, cloth nappy libraries and washable nappy laundry services will be involved in events throughout the week, including reusable nappy demonstrations, workshops, and information on claiming incentives, such as:  • In London, eight local councils currently participate in a voucher incentive scheme run by Real Nappies for London that provides financial assistance to families using reusable nappies for the first time. Research has shown this to be a cost-effective mechanism with a real impact on public waste disposal budgets: councils save eleven times as much on waste disposal as they spend administering the scheme. • Using the hashtag #PassTheNappy, parents and caregivers are encouraged to pass on no longer needed, good quality reusable nappies to families expecting a baby or with a child in nappies, posting their donations on social media to welcome families to the online reusable nappy community and symbolise the environmental and cost-saving benefits of switching to reusable nappies. To find out more about Reusable Nappy Week and how to get involved, visit the Reusable Nappy Week website and follow #ReusableNappyWeek on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

The Issues

Waste:  Parents in the UK throw out approximately 3 million disposable nappies each year, costing local authorities over £60 million per annum for disposal. A discarded disposably nappy travels through the household waste system where it is either incinerated or sent to landfill where it will take more than 300 years to break down. Disposable nappies are one of the biggest contributors to single-use plastic waste, the worst cause of contamination in recycling and cost councils millions all the while causing havoc to the environment2.

Production:  The production of disposable nappies has a larger environmental impact than its waste.  It takes over 1,500 litres of crude oil to produce enough disposable nappies for a new-born baby until they become potty trained around 2.5 years.  That is because the absorbent core of disposable baby nappies is usually made from wood pulp, which is highly water intensive and is a leading source of deforestation and soil depletion. Disposable nappies use 20 times more land for production of raw materials and require three times more energy to make than reusable nappies.3

Better for your wallet!

By making the switch to reusables, families can save a lot of money over the long term.  For an average 2.5 years until a baby is fully potty trained, families can get through approximately 4000 nappy changes at a cost of £1000.  The average one-time upfront cost for reusable nappies can be around £300, which means a savings of up to £700 per baby.4 

Better for Baby

Reusable nappies are better for baby’s skin.  TotsBots cloth nappies are the only reusable nappy brand to be completely Oeko-Tex 100-certified, meaning absolutely no harmful chemicals next to baby’s delicate skin.  Breathable, washable nappies are much less likely to cause nappy rash, eczema, psoriasis, and other skin conditions. Plus, using fabric nappies encourages early potty training. 

Who are TotsBots?  

TotsBots was launched in 2002 by Scottish couple Fiona and Magnus Smyth because they wanted an eco-friendly, safe nappy for their baby daughter Maia. With a lack of retail options on the market at the time, Fiona took to her sewing machine and made her first cloth nappy at the kitchen table. Since that day, the Glasgow- based business has grown steadily and now sells in 30 countries worldwide. 

TotsBots was acquired by Frugi in 2020 and since the start of the pandemic, sales have risen 30% YoY. This rapid growth is thanks to an increase in online shopping coupled with the growing popularity of eco-friendly products as parents try to reduce the 3 billion disposable nappies that get sent to landfill annually. 

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