A picnic is a fantastic way to spend a summer afternoon. However, picnics can often result in a pit of trash and waste. Here are a few tips for a greener picnic – all the tasty benefits without the huge environmental impact.
Pick a nearby locale. Save on fuel by walking or biking, and enjoy even more time outdoors.
- Prepare a menu of locally grown foods that are in season. Or, swing by the farmer’s market before you picnic.
- Class up your picnic basket with real plates. In 2009, the US generated 13 million tons of plastics waste from containers and packaging, and 7 million tons of “nondurable plastic waste” (think plates and cups).
- Bring silverware, not plastic-ware. 40 billion plastic utensils are used each year, and the majority of these are thrown out.
- Cloth napkins. Easy to clean, and if you get the red checkered pattern, go with the classic picnic theme.
- Use compostable garbage bags for collecting food. Just remember to avoid meat, dairy, and oily foods if you compost in your backyard.
If you do need disposable items, bring along a permanent marker. Don’t risk misplacing your cup (and having to get a new one). Decorate your cup, and make it your own! Just be sure to make it unique.