A Guide To Staying Sustainable this Christmas

Feeling festive but worried about the effects that the upcoming merriments have on our climate? [...]

Feeling festive but worried about the effects that the upcoming merriments have on our climate? House of Coco are here to save you the stress and ecological guilt by sharing our top tips on staying sustainable this year.

Christmas is a time for family festivities, last-minute panic buying of presents and spending full days in loungewear watching movies. But it is estimated that we produce 30% more waste around the Christmas period; Waste Collection Company, Biffa suggests that more than 100 million bags of rubbish are sent to landfill throughout the month. The purchasing of Christmas Tree’s, in particular, is said to reach over 6 million transactions, whilst over 125 tonnes of plastic packaging is thrown away despite the greener alternative of recycling. Although it would be easier to turn a blind eye to the effects our consumption has on the planet during this time of year, the climate crisis we face refuses to pause whilst we enjoy our Christmas Dinners. So how can we stay eco-friendly without compromising on the celebrations this season?

 

Be mindful when sourcing your food

If you’ve drawn the short straw this year and face the pressure of cooking dinner, opt to buy your food from locally sourced / organic shops, as opposed to the major supermarket chains. Not only will you probably find a better quality of cuisine, but you’ll also be supporting your local business during their most challenging time of the year. If you prefer the digital way of spending, companies such as Oddbox and Wonky Veg Boxes aim to give food that would normally be discarded another chance at making it onto the dinner table.

Reconsider your food waste

If Christmas isn’t a time for overeating, then when is? Although our eyes are usually bigger than our stomachs during this time of year, taking a second to think about where your uneaten leftovers will end up might just contribute to saving the planet … and your wallet. Although it can be hard to gauge how much food you might need to feed a houseful, try to incorporate any leftovers into your next few days’ worths of meals rather than tossing them straight into the bin – it only takes a quick internet search to find some savvy leftover recipes that your family will be sure to thank you for.

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UK FOOD WASTE FACTS EVERYONE NEEDS TO KNOW ⁣ ⁣ Food that goes to landfill creates harmful greenhouse gases that contribute to climate change. It’s fair to say that food waste causes just as much damage to our planet as plastic waste.⁣ ⁣ 🤷🏻‍♂️DID YOU KNOW?⁣ ⁣ 👉🏼70,000 children in London go to school hungry everyday⁣ ⁣ 👉🏼1 in 6 meals are wasted in hospitality and catering⁣ ⁣ 👉🏼Over 8 million people are living in UK households with food insecurity and not knowing when their next meal will be ⁣ ⁣ 👉🏼Up to 44% of bread produced everyday is wasted⁣ ⁣ 👉🏼The average family in the UK wastes roughly £800 on food each year⁣ ⁣ NOW…⁣ ⁣ 🚗If we stopped throwing away our food, it would be the same as taking one in four cars off the road. ⁣ ⁣ 🤔Imagine a world where we didn’t waste food, a world where food was accessible for everyone no matter your economic background, or race. ⁣ ⁣ Become a volunteer and reduce food with: @thefelixproject⁣ Donate food to: Community Fridges or @cityharvestlondon or @foodcycle⁣ To rescue unsold food from stores: @toogoodtogo.uk⁣⁣ To prevent food waste with your neighbours @olio_ex ⁣ To get involved with your local community: @madeinhackney⁣⁣ ⁣ 🤳🏼🤳🏼If you had a meal today, LIKE this post or SHARE with your friends – together, LET’S FIGHT FOOD WASTE⁣.

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Give your unwanted items a new life

One man’s trash is another man’s treasure – if you find yourself discovering old gems that have had their time in your home, head down to your local charity shop and donate any unwanted decorations or gifts that are still in good condition. Alternatively, if you’re feeling crafty this Christmas, why not use your out-dated ornaments to create something new for your household. Not only will you find that the process contributes to your mindfulness, it’s also a great way to be savvy with what could have ended up in your waste.

Re-consider your gifts

Although it’s natural to want to make your gifts look as decorative and appealing as possible, the GWP Group has estimated that this Christmas, we will collectively use 227,000 miles of wrapping paper, with the majority ending up in landfill. An alternative to buying wrapping paper this season is using typical brown paper, which is said to be proportionally more environmentally-friendly than its decorative competitors. However, if you’re not willing to compromise on appearance, many online sellers are now introducing recycled wrapping paper into their stock, so that you can continue to make your presents look picture-perfect, without the harmful consequences.

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Beth Ryder

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