Christmas is fast approaching, a time of celebration and the most wasteful time of year.
As with everything in life, if we want to reduce the waste we create at Christmas, so it does not become Wastemas, we need to spend a bit more time in planning.
Think about the type of Christmas you want to have. What is important to you? Family traditions, spending time with loved ones, being generous, rest and relaxation, lots of celebrations or eating wonderful food?
Whatever Christmas means to you, remember all the good we have done during the year to make our community and environment more sustainable shouldn’t be forgotten as we ponder the value of a cheap plastic toy gift.
Much of our Christmas celebrations revolve around food, so when you are planning meals, plan to the plate, not to what you think your stomach wants. With buffet style meals, we often try a bit of everything and with this in mind, cater for what will fit on a plate and no more.
There is a good chance you will still have lots of leftovers to deal with, but if you share the load of preparing food and also distributing the leftovers, you can reduce your food waste.
Make sure everyone brings a sizeable container for any leftovers and then you’ve given the gift of a Boxing Day that doesn’t require any cooking.
Serve your Christmas dishes in containers that are beautiful on display and also have lids for putting away any leftovers straight after the meal. This ensures your leftovers can be put into the fridge quickly and easily reducing the chances of them being thrown away.
It would be great to keep our waste to a minimum over Christmas, so make sure you sort the waste and get it into the right bins clearly marked for recycling, composting, or even reusing (kids love boxes) and minimise what goes to landfill.
Remember your kerbside collections may change during the holidays so check with your council.
La Vergne Lehmann, Grampians Central West Waste & Resource Recovery Group