By Melanie Cousins 12th December 2019

With Christmas festivities just around the corner for most of us it’s a time of frenzied shopping whether it’s for turkey and sprouts or gifts for grandparents. But there a few simple things we can do to limit some of our unnecessary waste at this time of year. How many can you try?

1. Make or buy an advent calendar which can be filled each year with your own treats and reused.

2. Look out for gift sets with less packaging, or buy separately and display in a useable container – how about a plant pot?

3. Get creative with your wrapping – can you reuse newspaper or old wrapping paper, or use brown paper and string to minimise sellotape use.

4. Plan your food. Make a sensible list of what you need and stick to it to reduce food waste. And compost any waste you do have.

5. Use the outdoors to decorate. From twigs and fir cones to holly and willow wreaths, the natural world is a great source of decorating materials – and they don’t usually cost anything.

6. Make sure you take reusable bags Christmas gift and food shopping so you don’t need to buy any.

7. Buy people experiences rather than physical items. Giving the gift of memories or even a charity donation is often more welcomed than a present.

8. Make your own treats like mince pies so you don’t need to buy them with all the packaging.

9. Turn off Christmas tree lights when you’re out or in bed and use solar lights for outdoor decorations if you can.

10. Recycle recycle recycle. Inevitably there will be plenty of waste in most homes this Christmas. Take the time to sort through it and recycle as much as possible. Or keep things for next year if you can reuse them..