Guide: How to reduce Christmas waste

  • 24 December 2013
Christmas presents

Did you know that every hour the UK throws away enough waste to fill the Albert Hall?

So think about how much more we throw away at Christmas!

Everything from wrapping paper to Christmas trees is chucked away after the festive fun is over.

Our guide reveals the little things you can do to help reduce waste at Christmas.

Paper

  • If all the wrapping paper we throw away was laid out in a line it would reach all the way to the Moon - that's a lot of paper! But it's very easy to recycle, lots of councils will take it away for you or take it to a recycling bank which can be found at most supermarkets.
  • Why not try giving presents in gift bags? That way you can reuse them again next year and save on paper!
  • Christmas cards don't have to be thrown away, you can try cutting them up and making new cards or gift tags out of them. You'll be extra organised for next Christmas and save a few pennies!

Christmas Trees

  • If you have a real Christmas tree it's a great thing to recycle. There's lots of councils and companies who will collect it for you. It can then be shredded and used as compost to help next years trees or as chipping to cover pathways.
  • How about getting a living Christmas tree with roots? That way it will keep on growing year after year and you can eventually plant it in your garden.

Christmas food

  • It's estimated that we throw out over 7 million tonnes of food every year. So why not help out in the kitchen and get creative with all that leftover turkey.
  • If you've got a compost bin in your garden you can throw in all those veg peelings.
  • Birds love Christmas leftovers too, any scraps of fruit cake and mince pies will go down a treat. It will give them energy and nutrients to help them through the cold winter months.

Presents

  • If you're given any presents that don't fit or have old things that you wont need anymore don't throw them away. There's lots of charities out there who will pass on gifts to people in need.