Christmas is one of the most delightful times of year. A time when the whole of our busy society is forced to stop a focus on a message of hope. I love that no matter how secular and commercial Christmas become there is still a celebration of peace, reconciliation and hope at the heart of it. Sadly it is also often a time of mass consumerism and subsequent waste. However it doesn’t have to be. It’s possible to ditch the shopping-frenzy and have a Zero Waste Christmas. Here’s how:
- Plan your menu so that you aren’t rushing around the shops at the last minute chucking stuff into a trolley that you aren’t sure you need.
- Think carefully about adequate portions so you don’t over-cater.
- Go for quality of food over quantity and spend your money on fewer good quality items from farmers markets, ethical providores and small suppliers
- Don’t let the kids have first go at the buffet. They pile up their plate in excitement and then don’t eat half of it.
- Have a few recipes at hand to cope with leftover ham, turkey or roast veg.
- Have a few reusable containers for people to use as doggie bags
- Have a compost bin at hand to deal with vegetable scraps
- Use crockery and proper cutlery. Yes, there is washing up so to enlist your guests to help you and use the time to have a good natter. If this just isn’t going to happen without some kind of violence breaking out consider biodegradable alternatives to the usual disposable stuff.
- Decorate your table without plastics. Use items from nature, reusable bunting, vintage linens or even the after dinner chocolates in martini glasses to brighten things up.
- Make the wrapping part of the gift by using fabric bags, (new) tea towels, handkerchiefs, or scarves tied with ribbon to wrap small gifts. If this won’t work, have a tub near the tree to collect the paper so it can go straight in the recycling bin with very little effort.
- Make yourself a zero waste Christmas tree by recycling, up cycling or repurposing things you are not currently using.
Merry Zero Waste Christmas!