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I’ve been wanting to write this post since September when I first thought of it, but somehow I’ve always been too busy to write it. So instead, I thought that Plastic-Free July would be a perfect time! Have you ever thought about how much plastic is used in a picnic? Maybe you grab a meal deal – that’s a sandwich with plastic, crisps with plastic and a drink in a plastic bottle. I’m very passionate about not buying meal deals and instead of making your own. Do you ever see people post on Instagram when they are on a picnic with friends? They always have bags of crisps or a plastic box of cakes etc. I understand that it is much easier to just go to a shop and buy it all, but surely it’s more fun to invite some friends and bake a batch of cookies? Either way, in this post I’m discussing how to have an eco-friendly picnic.
The first step to an eco-friendly picnic is travelling to the destination. Obviously, the best way is to walk, but if you are meeting up somewhere that is too far to walk, then carpool. If you are going with lots of people, this is even better. Alternatively, you could catch the bus or cycle. That kind of thing. Make sure you check for a car park before you go.
Onto the main event of any picnic, the food! To be as eco-friendly as possible, make your own food. Some ideas:
- Hummus – I think you just blend chickpeas, lemon and a few other ingredients
- Pasta salad
- Couscous salad
- Sausage rolls
- Veg crisps – I made some carrot crisps last week and they were delicious!
- Baking tray
- 1 carrot
- 1 tsp olive oil
- 1 pinch salt
- Peel the carrot, try to press down a bit so that they are thicker than a peel of carrot and then add to a bowl
- Add the olive oil and salt to the bowl and give it a toss
- Place the carrot strips on the baking tray, making sure that they are separate
- Cook in the oven for 10 minutes, or until slightly crispy
Reusable water bottle* (gifted)
If you are going to have an eco-friendly picnic in the sun, then you will definitely need a reusable water bottle! SHO sell some amazing reusable water bottles which keep cold drinks cold for 24 hours! And if you are having a rainy day picnic, they keep warm liquids warm for 12 hours – pretty good if you ask me.
So now that you’ve made all that lovely homemade food, what are you going to store it in? Definitely not cling film or a plastic sandwich bag! My advice is to pack it in Tupperware as it will stay fresh for a long time. Alternatively, you could store it in a WaxWraps sandwich bag* (see my previous post), paper bag*, paper + string, etc.
Next, we have the cutlery. There has been a bit of controversy over bamboo cutlery. Some people like to have a separate set of cutlery that they only use for days out and they want to use bamboo because, why not? It is sustainable. Then there are others who want to use a set of cutlery but don’t want to buy bamboo because they already have plenty of sets at home that they can take out and use at home too. For me, I have bought a set of bamboo cutlery*. I bought it during uni when I couldn’t rely on there being another set of cutlery to use (because everyone stole mine 😑). I went on a few picnics and so needed them. As long as you don’t use single-use cutlery, I think either is fine.
Personally, I never bring plates to a picnic. We tend to eat finger food so don’t really require a plate. You could just eat from your Tupperware, or maybe you could buy one of those cool picnic hampers* that comes with plates and cutlery!
Take memories, leave footprints
Leave your destination as you found it! There is so much litter about which is absolutely devastating, and to be able to enjoy nature in the future, you need to take your rubbish home with you.
Best wishes, Cx
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