Christmas… the most wasteful time of year. That’s not usually the way we hear the festive season described but with the equivalent of 2 million turkeys being thrown away every year it's hard to ignore the fact that there is a darker side to this time of year.
At Henri, we’re interested in all issues surrounding sustainability and ethical living and this is reflected in our use of 100% organic cotton and focus on mindful purchasing within fashion. We live in a culture that has normalised mass consumption and the constant state of wanting the newest trend.
When researching for this blog post, we came across a few shocking statistics which really emphasise the wasteful society we live in and made us pause for thought.
- The carbon footprint of Christmas-time equates to 5.5 per cent of the UK’s annual carbon dioxide emissions.
- £2.4 billion is wasted on uneaten, discarded food and unwanted gifts.
- 300,000 tonnes of card packaging consumed during the period is enough to cover Big Ben nearly 260,000 times!
- Every Christmas, we throw away enough wrapping paper to cover over 11,000 football pitches.
- 37 per cent of adults said they received gifts worth an average of £54 that they did not want or use.
We can all do our bit to try and reduce the waste produced over Christmas. Excess food and old trees are big waste culprits but we have a few suggestions below to reduce and reuse:
- Olio is a free app where people can connect with their neighbours and local shops and share food items instead of throwing them away. Great for all of those leftover carrots!
- For Christmas trees, find out where you can recycle them in your borough here: https://londonist.com/2014/01/where-to-recycle-your-christmas-tree-in-london
- If somebody gives you a present that you don't really want, rather than throw it away, pass it on to your local hospital, homelessness shelter, charity shop or school.
Purchasing consciously is another way to be less wasteful. If you’re unsure about your Christmas shopping this year and want to purchase ethically, we’ve made it a little easier for you with our Henri gift cards which allow you to invest in the sustainable wardrobe of a loved one.