Increasingly there is an awareness of the ecological aspect of gift giving, both on an individual level, and by companies who are anxious to incorporate sustainability as a part of their gift giving. We are often asked to supply eco gifts, and find it is not difficult to find suitable gifts, but it may take a little extra thought.
This does not mean adopting a tie-dyed hippy approach, but instead a little consideration to find stylish yet more sustainable gifts. We have all experienced one of those other gifts at some time. Multi layered packaging, which eventually reveals a clam-shell like plastic casing, which in turn protects its treasure of some cheaply made item which barely lasts past Christmas. All which will find its way to the nearest landfill before long.
There are many ways to give more eco friendly gifts. Five of the key considerations are:
If you are supplying a locally made gift, you will not be adding additional transportation miles to the finished product. You are also in a position to know more about the environmental stance and reputation of the manufacturer as regards pollution, recycling etc.
Cheaply made products inevitably do not last, requiring replacement sooner and creating more waste. The recipient and the environment will appreciate your good judgment in choosing a quality item instead of an alternative of inferior quality.
Encourage environmentally sound behaviour with your gift.
For example give a tree to be planted, or perhaps a book on gardening or environmental issues. Consider solar powered gifts, or those that can take batteries which are solar powered. Children can be enthused with gifts like a paper making kit (involving recycling of paper) or making a worm house
Choose the most appropriate gifts you can.
Spend time considering your recipients. Well chosen gifts will encourage their usage and retention. This makes your gift more appreciated, and less likely to make a quick journey to the landfill. Consider artisan hand made gifts. These may be more unique, and can have more appeal on an emotional level, and therefore be retained longer. They may also be better made than a mass manufactured alternative, and therefore will last longer.
Consider the materials your gift is made with, and packed in.
Are there more natural materials or even recycled options available? Is there a more natural packaging alternative, for example woven flax gift baskets, jute bags or wooden boxes made from sustainably harvested pine trees with wood shavings.
With a little thought and consideration of environmental impact, your gifts can be both stylish and sustainable.
We are happy to help with advice, and you should not hesitate to ask your gift retailer for more information, which will encourage more stocking of environmentally sound products.
You will find more information on the Eco Gifts: Eco Friendly Gifts section of our website.