Winter celebrations are approaching, bringing all the joys of gathering with loved ones around food and gifts! Along with the joys, winter celebrations may mean having lists of gifts to give—which can feel overwhelming in itself, much less the concerns of wrapping and packaging waste. Gifts that are low-waste have minimal to no waste impact. The less that goes in the trash the better. We have some ideas to simplify gift giving with low waste in mind.
Our Bulk department is one way that Seward Co-op offers low waste shopping. Consider the Bulk department as a resource for gifts! Share a favorite cookie recipe with loved one by making a personalized cookie mix in a jar. Gather the dry ingredients needed from the Bulk section. Find key ingredients such as flour from Community Foods producer Baker’s Field or Equal Exchange chocolate chips. Assemble the dry mixture layered into a mason jar from home. Have someone on the list that’s not a baker? Try gifting coffee or tea from the Bulk section! It is as simple as selecting one of their favorites and gifting it in a reusable seal-tight container.
Put paper bags from shopping trips past to good use! Wrapping gifts with brown paper bags is a good way to reuse items in the home. Once the gift is unwrapped, it can be easily recycled. To spruce up the wrapping job, decorate with evergreens or get creative using scrap twine.
Another approach to low-waste gift giving is to support producers that commit to environmental and socially responsible practices. Purchases from Pacha Soap Co. help support clean-water initiatives in Africa. Terra Natural Designs jewelry pieces are made with renewable seeds from the Amazon Jungle. Chico Bag actively advocates for waste reduction. There are many ways to practice low waste year-round, gifting giving season does not have to be an exception. It is just a matter of knowing where to start!