‘Tis the season to be jolly and South Africans are bracing themselves for a sunny festive season filled with family, loved ones and the gift of giving. The World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) South Africa wants to encourage consumers to reduce the amount of waste usually associated with the holidays.

 

”The WWF mantra is to “refuse, reduce and reuse” and then “recycle”. This includes asking yourself whether you really need what you’re about to buy, taking your own reusable bags along with you to the supermarket, cutting down on packaging, and choosing reusable, durable goods over single-use items. Once you’ve followed all these steps, we also want you to recycle as much as possible.” Says Eitan Prince, Digital Communications Manager with WWF-SA.

 

How to reduce waste this festive season

A fun, interactive way for consumers to make better choices this festive season is to sign up for WWF’s brand new #GoodTidings advent calendar which is brimming with clever waste curbing ideas.

 

Daily tidings come in the form of videos, demos, blogs, photo galleries, recipe cards and more created with support from WWF ambassadors including Chef Zola Nene, media personalities Zoe Brown, Carl Wastie, Claire Mawisa and sustainable fashion guru, Jackie May. Here’s a sneak preview on what you can expect from the calendar.

 

  1. All that glitters is not gold

Sparkly glitter is undeniably festive but much of it’s made from microplastics which can end up polluting the environment or be consumed by fish, birds and other animals. Consider plastic-free décor such as glass jars filled with beautiful succulents and decorations made from fabrics or ribbon.

 

  1. Gift wrapping alternatives

Wrapping paper – its festive, it’s fun, it’s fleeting. Each year tons of it finds its way to landfills so why not use leftover birthday wrapping paper or gift bags? “You could experiment with covering gifts with fabric, old newspapers or put them into any attractive tins, boxes or jars you may have lying around your home or office,” offers Prince.

 

  1. Show love to local producers

There are many local designers and producers making exciting and innovative products from sustainable materials. Gems such as Uzwelo, who teams up with local communities to convert banners to fabric to make functional, fashionable and affordable bags, can all be found on the newly revamped WWF e-commerce site. Prince explains, “Proceeds from these sales help support the WWF’s vital work.”

 

The festive season no longer needs to be the season of excess and waste. By visiting www.wwf.org.za and downloading the #GoodTidings advent calendar with its waste busting tips, you’re on the right track to being part of the solution for a living planet while having a jolly good time as well. Don’t forget to share!

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