Raising a child is a big step for every person that takes the journey. It also takes a large toll on our earth, with many millions of nappies entering landfills every year. This is where Cottontail Nappy Service comes in. The new service, launching in July, is tailored to help make parents lives easier and to remove the toll on our landfills and on our earth.
Mother and daughter team, Rosemary and Ashley, came up with the idea for Cottontail Nappy Service to bring parents and eco-friendly Childcare Centres on the Sunshine Coast a reusable Modern Cloth Nappy delivery service to save parents thousands of dollars and reduce the negative impact on the environment. Ashley is herself an expectant mum, with her first baby due in July, and she's looking forward to bringing her enthusiasm and dedication to improving todays ecosystem for the future, and spreading awareness on natural alternatives for our babies with her fellow new mums.
“Almost 800 million disposable nappies end up in Australian landfills annually and we’re setting out to tackle the estimated 20,000 tonnes sent to landfill on the Sunshine Coast every year,” Ashley says.
“As the Sunshine Coast’s population grows, land is scarcer and the issue of plastic, non-biodegradable disposable nappies going into landfill is coming more and more pressing.”
The Australian Bureau of Statistics list the number of births for the Sunshine Coast last year as 3,535. With each child using an average of 6,500 disposable nappies during babyhood and working on the current national average of only 5 per cent of those babies using cloth nappies, that means the Sunshine Coast birth rate contributes to 23,347,000 plastic disposable nappies into our eco-system.
Those statistics are mind boggling. Let’s break them down:
Babies born on the Sunshine Coast each year: 3,535
95 per cent of those babies using disposables: 3,358
Nappies used per child: 6,500
Annual disposable nappy burden on Sunshine Coast environment: 23,347,000
“Our purpose at Cottontail Nappy Service would be to provide a service to our community to assist families in understanding the financial benefits of using cloth nappies and break down the misconceptions around modern cloth nappy use. As more parents shift towards using cloth nappies, the burden on our environment lessens,” Ashley says.
“Households with just one baby in disposable nappies accounted for 50 per cent of the household waste and the nappies all ended up in landfill. Disposable nappies have been around for about 50 years and every single one of them is still on the planet because the plastics in disposable nappies take 200-500 years to break down, with most made from non-renewable plastics, crude oil, wood pulp and about 30 different chemicals.”
“Organic material such as faeces sent to our landfill breaks down and eventually releases methane, a greenhouse gas that is 21 times more potent than carbon dioxide – having wide-ranging implications for global warming,” Ashley adds.
In comparison, modern cloth nappies are made from organic cloth that is biodegradable. They are cheaper to use and more environmentally friendly than disposable nappies and can save parents up to $3000 for each child over a period of two and a half years.
How often have you thought about using cloth nappies, but abandoned the idea due to the time involved?
If laundering is the only thing putting you off there is a solution. Wouldn’t it be great if you could use cloth nappies, but have someone else do the hard and time-consuming part for you?
Rosemary says that Cottontail Nappy Service was born out of a desire to make a lasting positive impact on our environment, as well as minimise the time mums and dads spend in maintaining the ongoing use of cloth nappies.
“We understand that parents are busy. There may be times when it is more convenient to use a disposable nappy. However, by limiting this use you can reduce your household costs and also environmental impact by using cloth nappies most of the time,” Rosemary says.
“We aim to help parents by giving them more time to enjoy the pleasures of parenting, reduce the community’s impact on the environment and remove the barriers to using cloth nappies, especially for those who have never used them.”
From July, the service will provide a weekly delivery cloth nappy service on the Sunshine Coast for a small cost of $35.00 – providing the same effortless convenience of disposable nappies, but without the long-term impact on our environment. The service will be laundering all nappies according to Australian Laundry Standards ASO 4146.
“Our super soft bamboo microfiber cloth nappies, consisting of organic bamboo, cotton and charcoal fibres, are easier to use and clean than the old-style terry toweling nappies with snaps instead of safety pins and are shaped the same way as a disposable, with double side leg gussets to prevent leakage, with no need for folding,” says Ashley.
"Bamboo is 40 per cent more absorbent than the finest organic cotton and the added Charcoal fibres act as a natural magnet to attract liquid.
“We can also provide bamboo biodegradable nappies that are hypoallergenic and designed to be toxin free. No bleach, alcohol, fragrances, phthalates or parabens are used in manufacture. They are extremely absorbent and don’t require changing more regularly than disposables – every 3 hours or so.”