Tis the season to make sure that the only post-festive guilt is mince pie-related, and not a scary amount of black bin liners on Boxing Day. Here are our top tips for a sustainable Christmas >
Choose recycled Christmas cards
Every year over 200,000 trees get cut down to make Christmas cards. Make sure yours are made from recycled paper. They needn’t cost you an arm and a leg either.
Eat less, but better meat
If you’re concerned about your environmental impact, then eating less, but better quality meat has to be top of your to-do list. Swap the ham, the pigs in blankets, and the sausage stuffing for veggie trimmings, and splash your meat budget on a high-welfare, locally-reared, free-range turkey – the best you can afford. Not only will you be reducing your environmental impact, and making a healthier choice, but you’ll also tuck in guilt-free, knowing that your turkey had a good life before it became your dinner.
Put leftover turkey to good use
BBC Good Food to the rescue here – they’ve come up with over 10 genuinely original, easy and tasty ideas to use up leftover turkey. If all else fails, then good ol’ turkey curry is always a crowd-pleaser.
Be eco with your wrapping paper
Did you know that regular patterned wrapping paper can’t be recyled – pretty sad right? There are bags of alternatives though – Food waste pioneers Olio, share four eco wrapping hacks – which cater to every ability!
Donate your excess food
To your local food bank, homeless shelter, or food cycle scheme. It’s a great time of year to clear out your kitchen cupboards, so make sure that any (in date) food is being put to good use.
Minimise food waste by loving your freezer
With fridge space at a premium (that prosecco’s not going to chill itself) make sure things aren’t going past their best and follow these handy tips.
And what you can’t reduce, reuse!.
If you are lucky enough to have a log burner or fireplace to cosy up near during these long winter nights, you might consider ditching the standard logs and getting some Bio-Bean Coffee logs.
The UK produces over 500,000 tonnes of waste coffee grounds every year and Bio-Bean uses spent coffee, collected from coffee shops, to produce their sustainable alternative to conventional fossil fuels. Each carbon neutral Coffee Log is made from the grounds of 25 cups of coffee and burns 20% hotter and longer than kiln-dried wood. And recycling coffee waste generates 80% less emissions than landfill.
Do something different with your decks
Ditch the plastic fantastic tinsel, and go for some of these more natural options instead. We love this orange slice and cinnamon stick garland idea (bet it smells lovely too!) or for the more seasoned crafter, give these paper balls a go.
Avoid gifts that need batteries
Eventually, they may end up in landfill, where they leak toxic metals into the ground. Did you know that around 40% of battery sales are over the festive season?
Hit your local this Christmas – whether it’s the high street, artists’ market, butcher, baker, greengrocer or pub, you’ll not only be supporting the businesses on your doorstep (which is feelgood factor in itself) but you’ll also spend less time in the car – hooray!
If you have been into a BTP since June you will have seen these bright and beautiful reusable cups. They’re made from bamboo, which is the world’s most sustainable resource, and will compost at home should the day come when you decide to part ways. You can mix and match to create the perfect colour combo for that difficult to buy for co-worker who always wears pink and yellow.They come in at £4.25 – £4.75 depending on what size you go for, so perfect for a guilt-free secret Santa.
When we got rid of all our paper cups, we sent them off to be better versions of themselves, that is, they became rCups! They are designed to be 100% leak proof which is great if you need to get a jog on to get out an unexpected downpour this winter. You can open and close them with one hand no need to take off a glove to fiddle with any small parts.
Or better still, DIY when it comes to gifts
Anna Jones has us totally inspired with her DIY foodie gifts – much funkier than your average pot of jam! (psst, someone please make me those meringues, ok thanks)
Or here are some brilliant gifts that kiddies can make for grown-ups too… hello brownie points!
How do you make your Christmas more sustainable? We’d love to hear from you – either by email or on the socials, using #makingthingsbetter.
Have a good one!