By Sophie Weissensteiner
The days are getting longer and sunnier? Finally, summer has arrived! Just the right time to grab a blanket, some finger food, and drinks and head to the nearest park for a lovely picnic. However, these days picnics produce a lot of waste from to-go meals and drinks in disposable packaging which is not quite sustainable.
When it comes to having picnics we should try and change our approach to it again, meaning we should find a more conscious way to enjoy ourselves in nature. This doesn’t mean that we have to fully switch all our essentials to zero waste products but rather use what we already have.
You may have a reusable plastic bottle or container, and even though you might think you don’t want to use plastic anymore, there is no point in throwing them away. After all, it will take centuries to decompose. Instead of focusing on buying more and more, we should choose our new essentials carefully.
Our sustainable mantra: Reduce, reuse and recycle before you buy new.
We know it can be challenging to escape the consumer culture of today’s time based on impulsive buying BUT it’s never too late to reverse our behaviour and follow a sustainable lifestyle. Not only your wallet will thank you but also the environment.
Whatever your motivations for a sustainable picnic are, we’ve got you covered in case you’re looking for some eco-friendly essentials.
1. Containers & Food Wrap
This is one of the most important essentials for a sustainable picnic: reusable containers! Whether you’re bringing a delicious pasta salad with finely chopped tomatoes, cucumber, garlic, and peppers or some freshly made sandwiches or wraps with hummus, rocket, pepper, and sundried tomatoes – whatever you desire, really – these containers and bags will keep your picnic eco-friendly.
Who needs plastic or paper plates when you could get beautiful bamboo plates like these. Poketo’s dinner plates are not only an eye-catcher but they’re also made of organic bamboo fibre and corn starch. On top of that: Their colourful and artistic products are non-toxic and compostable! The only thing you’ve to think about: What food will you serve with these eco-friendly plates?
A lot of us have already switched to reusable water bottles which come really handy for picnics. If you’re still looking for a non-plastic bottle, here are some suggestions. Tip: The Corkcicle bottle is perfect for a homemade cocktail or mocktail because it allows you to put in ice cubes. Whereas the Ayaida bottle is a minimalist and trendy allrounder (Editor approved!).
But all of them are stylish and eco-friendly alternatives to store-bought cans and plastic bottles!
We’ve found the perfect sustainable alternative to plastic cups and even their paper equivalent: stainless steel or borosilicate glass tumblers and copper mugs! They look absolutely stunning and will soon become your favourite eco-friendly picnic essential as they keep your drink cool.
5. Reusable Straws
You guessed it! These gorgeous reusable glass and stainless steel straws will bring you so much joy when you have your perfect summer aperitif. Tip: Bring some colour to your picnic feast with Poketo’s glass straws!
6. Zero Waste Cutlery
It might seem a bit of an effort to carry around your own zero waste cutlery set but it will be worth it. Once you’re used to pouch the portable reusable cutlery, you don’t want to go back to plastic forks and knives. We promise!
How you set up the seating area at your picnic spot might seem obvious though some nice and eco-friendly blankets and cushions make it even cosier. Why don’t you upgrade your seating area with a recycled plastic rug? The handwoven rug is light enough to become your new picnic staple.
8. Cloth Napkins
You might think paper napkins can’t be too bad? However, the recycling process of greasy paper napkins is problematic and difficult due to oils left on them. Plus, as Business Insider estimates, the average US citizen uses 2,200 standard 2-ply napkins every year. Good that there is a solution to this: washable cloth napkins.
We hope our suggestions for sustainable picnic essentials have given you some inspiration for your next feast in the park. As we said before, you may have some of these items already at home or you only need to add a few eco-friendly alternatives to your picnic basket.
Either way, we are sure you’ll enjoy your picnic even more when being mindful of our planet and the environment. Happy (eco-friendly) picnic season!
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