From eco-gifts to the table. This year the gifts are chosen for their environmental and social impact. But more can be done.
Christmas is upon us, the efforts to buy the perfect gift for the loved ones are now daily.
The forecast of this year's turnover for the holiday period amounts to around 6 billion euros: shops, streets and shopping centers in the coming days will swarm with people looking for the surprise to put under the tree.
The attention to sustainability this year has guided many purchasing choices: from local products of excellence at km 0, to everyday objects made with ecological and ethical materials and practices, up to second-hand.
According to Adnkronos , " Christmas 2021 for Italians also sees the trend of buying second hand at the center: 30% of users say they buy second hand products, in particular for clothing (over 60%), but also for furniture and decorative objects (57%) and for luxury items (41%), and 40% say they do so for reasons related to ecology, second only to the factor of economic convenience. For 90% of the interviewees, in fact, the 'commitment and attention of brands to an eco-sustainable approach are elements of fundamental importance. "
The search for and the preference for ethical, supportive and sustainable gifts has given a great turning point to the convulsive, not very transparent and superficial purchase which, in the last twenty years, has prevailed over our festive habits. Sustainability is now also discussed at the table , from the choice of food to post-lunch precautions.
Here are some tips to celebrate a Christmas while minimizing waste.
1. Organic menus or climatic dishes
Eat what pollutes little. For the first time, the New York Times used the term "climatariana / o", or rather "Climatarian". Climatarians, those who through their diet contribute to the fight against climate change and try to reduce the environmental impact. Vegetables and fruit strictly in season , eliminate meat as much as possible and prefer local products, grown well, at km 0 . Boniviri products , such as extra virgin olive oil, almonds, honey, spices and capers can be considered strategic foods for this lifestyle, thanks to the environmental and social objectives that the Boniviri project and protocol proposes.
2. Eco-friendly Christmas decorations
For lovers of the symbol of Christmas par excellence, we recommend decorating a local tree. Originality is guaranteed: imagine lighting and decorating an orange tree, to be planted at the end of garden parties. Or for those who do not have an outdoor space, an Araucaria heterophylla (it looks a lot like a fir!) Could be for you. It grows indoors and does not need special care.
If you really love fir and find it hard to give it up, make sure it is certified and sustainably harvested. At the end of the Christmas period it must be followed, planted and attended regularly throughout the year. Handmade decorations, natural or with creative recycling will make it unique and with a reduced impact.
Artificial trees are not banned. If you use a fake tree for many years, preferably already bought second hand and of good quality, it can be more sustainable than a real tree.
But the numbers are high, it takes at least 8 years to equalize the carbon footprint of the production of a fake tree! Unfortunately on average an artificial tree is only used for 4 years. And recycling isn't easy!
3. No to single use and excessive portions
Disposable plastic products have now been banned or in any case their use has been discouraged thanks to the EU regulations on the regulation of disposable tableware. In their place, plates and glasses made of compostable material, such as PLA or mater-bi, have made room. Even if their life cycle is short, a good practice would be to avoid using them anyway , whenever possible. In fact, their production still requires many energy resources, from finding the raw material to the industrial machines that make it.
Preparing a detailed shopping list can also help avoid food waste. Dosing the quantities with respect to the guests, weighing all the ingredients are excellent practices for a zero waste Christmas. Cooking leftovers from the day before and giving new life to excess food, which is always a great excuse for another dinner with friends and family.
4. Transportation by public transport or by bike
Prefer traveling on foot, by bike or by public transport to go to loved ones, or even to make gifts. In addition, a little movement never hurts during this period!
5. Avoid the gift card
According to the WWF, our country produces 4 million tons of waste, of which 80% comes from the packaging industry, and every year releases 0.5 million tons of plastic waste into nature.
The packaging of your products already has enough impact on the environment, adding other decorative packaging that is only needed for a few seconds is not necessary.
With these small, but important gestures and attentions we can immediately make a big difference for the protection of our planet, and make our Christmas even better and greener!