The Dutch aren't stingy, but zero waste

A Note About Dutch Stereotypes and the Zero Waste Movement

The Dutch are known for being frugal. It used to be an aspect of my culture I’d feel ashamed of. I so vividly remember how my ex shunned me for sharing one tea bag between two cups of tea. “You are so Dutch! That’s such a cheap thing to do!”. I actually stopped doing it for a long time. It’s funny how things turn around, however. Call us cheap, frugal, or stingy, I call us resourceful. On kliekjesdag, usually the end of the week where you would just chuck all leftovers together in a frying pan and create something from nothing. We were combating food waste before it was cool.


To be completely honest with you, the stereotype of people from the Netherlands being frugal is driven more by the fact that we like to save some dough than save the earth. Still, considering that we are inherently (cue nature/nurture discussion) low waste consumers makes it a lot easier to jump and stay on the zero waste-bandwagon.


Shoutout to my mum for using those toothbrush clamps, double-dipping tea bags and making french toast out of stale bread.