Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. I receive a small commission at no cost to you when you make a purchase using my link.
During this time of thanks, lets give a thank you to Mother Earth for all she provides us. Thanksgiving is the start of the holiday season, soon we will have Christmas and New Years to celebrate. Much food will be eaten, and sadly, much food will be wasted.
Over the winter holiday season, starting with Thanksgiving, Americans throw away 25% more waste than any other time of the year.
how can we green Thanksgiving?
Below you will learn simple tips for making your Thanksgiving more Eco-friendly. At the end of this article I will share resources for where to get your Eco-friendly Thanksgiving supplies.
- Supporting your local economy keeps wealth close to home. You support families when you buy from small businesses.
- Try to find local food. This will ensure you are supporting the local economy and your food will be fresher.
- Bring your reusable bags when you go shopping.
- Buy in bulk to reduce packaging.
- Plan your meal, make a shopping list and stick to it.
- Commercial turkeys have been bred to produce as much meat as possible. They can't even reproduce without human intervention. Heritage breeds and organically-raised turkeys are more humane.
- Try to find a local, heritage breed turkey.
- Go to your local farmers market and pre-order a thanksgiving turkey.
- Ask at your local tack or livestock feed store about local turkey producers.
- If there are vegetarians at your party, prepare a vegetarian casserole as their main course.
- We want to minimize the amount of food that gets wasted. This is done by properly planning the right amount of food to make.
- Consider how many guests will be coming and try to plan the amount of food to make accordingly.
- A traditional meal consists of a main course, four side dishes and a dessert.
- Have guests bring a side-dish to minimize your work load (pre-plan these to avoid duplicates).
- Decorations break, get worn out or thrown away. These contribute to landfill waste and are unnecessary.
- Avoid buying any new decorations.
- Use natural decorations such as leaves, branches, pine cones, acorns or flowers.
- Reuse the same tablecloth every year.
- Use beeswax candles to add a touch of ambience.
- If we can minimize the amount of food we each throw away, we can make a big difference.
- Start with small portions so you can actually finish what is on your plate.
- Use cloth napkins.
- Have guests bring to-go containers so they can take their leftovers home.
- Make sure you eat your leftover turkey. Make turkey soup or turkey sandwiches.
- We need to eliminate disposable dishes, they are a huge burden on the planet - even if they are biodegradable. Using Eco-friendly cleaning products will reduce toxic waste into our local Eco-systems.
- Arrange ahead of time what guests will help with clean-up.
- Don't use Styrofoam cups or plates. Avoid using disposable anything if you can.
- Set out a bin for cans and bottles. Tell guests to place their drink cans/bottles in there.
- Use Eco-friendly dish soap and cleaning products.
- Clean with sponges and cloths rather than paper towel.
- Being grateful reminds us of the important things in life and makes us feel good about what we already have.
- Make a thank-you jar and have guests write on pieces of paper things they are thankful for. Read them out before dinner.
- Say a prayer before you eat.
- The day after we give thanks for what we have, we go out and buy things we probably don't need.
- Stay at home and enjoy your day.
- Participate in Buy Nothing Day.
How do you celebrate a green Thanksgiving? Tell us your stories in the comments below and share this article with a friend!
This post was originally published on September 15, 2016.