Christmas is such an amazing, joyful time of year, filled with friends, family, fun, but also something we’re increasingly aware of… waste.
It’s so easy to feel that the whole festive season is so intrinsically tied to wastefulness and unsustainability, that it starts to lose its joy, but we think if you adopt even a few of these waste-reducing tactics, you can still enjoy the festive season in a sustainable way. Plus, it’s a great way to get friends and family on board with sustainable living!
This one is easy! Make an effort to shop small, sustainable or second hand this year. See our recent conscious gift guide blog
Christmas is also a great time to share brands that help you live a more sustainable life, like plastic-free toiletries, especially as the refills are often cheaper than the initial spend, so once you get friends and family going, they might find they can make the change for good.
Start a reusable wrapping paper tradition with friends and family. Never buy wrapping paper again, hopefully by using material wraps this year, you’ll get them back next year! There are loads of fabulous companies who sell them, but it’s just as easy to make your own, even if you don’t have a sewing machine, trimming the edge of the materiel with pinking shears is an easy way to stop it fraying. Secure material with safety pins or ribbon.
You can’t always control what you receive, but you can take care to recycle what you can. Glittery or shiny wrapping paper cannot be recycled, a general rule is that if you scrunch it and it stays scrunched, it can be recycled (except for glittery paper, which can never be recycled even if it scrunches).
Also, to make sure all your paper is actually recycled, all plastic tape needs to be removed, if I were you, I’d start shouting to your friends about plastic-free tape, unless you want to spend boxing day painstakingly removing plastic tape from shreds of wrapping paper.
Food waste at Christmas is astronomical in the UK, according to GWP group, pigs in blankets alone are responsible for nearly 150 tonnes of polystyrene packaging each year, all of which is unrecyclable. This year, try sourcing your Christmas food from plastic free shops like local grocers or butchers, or bring your own containers if your local shops aren’t plastic free yet.
A helpful tip if you’re trying to reduce single-use items on the day itself is to roast a turkey using a reusable muslin rather than single-use foil. Dip the muslin in melted butter and cover the bird, tucking it in carefully, it should brown under the muslin, but if you are concerned, you can carefully remove the muslin before the end of the cooking time to allow the turkey to brown.
We know, no one wants to look stingy with the Christmas food, but that often leads to a lot of wasted food, but it doesn’t have to. Even the quickest google produces so many delicious ideas for those leftovers, so no excuses!
Finally, happy shopping, prepping, wrapping and partying from all at Wild Clouds.