Reducing Waste This Christmas – Penny Lynch

This might seem a month or so early but planning ahead is crucial. Give yourself time for a well prepared and considered festive season.

Give presents in gift bags. That way you can reuse them again next year and save paper. Gifts don’t always have to be “things”. Give the gift of time spent doing activities or make vouchers for experiences.

Christmas cards don’t need to be thrown away. Cut them up to make new cards or gift tags, for next year. Cutting down on waste and saving a few pennies. If you have a real Christmas tree, take it to your refuse recycling site, for the council to recycle into mulch. Better still, buy a potted tree that can be put out into the garden after Christmas and brought back in, year after year.

Try and avoid too much food waste by getting creative with the leftovers. Maybe even freeze some so you don’t get bored with turkey 5 nights in a row! Don’t throw away presents that don’t fit or you can’t use, there are lots of charities who will pass gifts on to people in need.

Second hand gifts are a great way to reduce waste and save money. Try your local Facebook Market Place, Ebay and Freecycle for good as new gifts. And don’t forget your local charity shops that have an amazing selection of gently used gift ideas.

Remember to recycle your batteries. Sainsbury’s in Cranleigh High Street have a bin for used batteries to be recycled.

Make a conscious effort to buy less. One thoughtful gift is far more appreciated than 5 superfluous presents. If you do feel the need for Christmas crackers consider buying plastic free crackers made from recycled materials. Or even making your own and personalise them.

Make your own mince pies and freeze them. It is estimated that we consume 175 million mince pies, over the Christmas period. In terms of packaging, 1 million mince pies are equivalent to 1 ton of aluminium foil!

Look for plastic free packaging on gifts as well as food items.

Reusable Advent Calendars are a great way of reducing plastic waste. Cloth or wooden calendars can be used year after year and filled with treats or suggesting an activity every day. Reuse decorations from previous years. Collect fallen branches and decorate with fairy lights to add a little sparkle.

Foil covered paper and glitter can’t be recycled so do think about what you are buying. Opt for a digital copy of your receipts. Most paper receipts can’t be recycled.

Give hand-made presents. They are appreciated so much more than anything shop bought.

We will be happy to hear your thoughts

Leave a reply

Cranleigh Magazine