With the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee just around the corner, we are sure everyone is busy planning street parties and celebrations. However, such events can be incredibly wasteful and harmful for the planet. We have some simple tips and tricks below to help you celebrate in an eco-friendly way!

Eco-Friendly Party Decorations

We all know that the décor can make or break a party! However, typical decorations are wasteful, single-use and often unnecessary.

When planning your get-together, opt for reusable decorations. Avoid specifics such as ‘Happy 18th Birthday’ - if you purchase generic banners, you can reuse these multiple times throughout the year (which will also save you money!) You can also make the following swaps to avoid plastic and waste:

  • Reusable fabric bunting
  • Paper garlands
  • Flower petals (instead of confetti)
  • Biodegradable balloons
  • Paper chains
  • 'E-Invites' (cutting the need for paper and ink)

If it’s a children’s event, we all know that party bags are expected! However, these are usually filled with plastic ‘tack’ that will be chucked away to sit in landfill forever more. Why not try and create eco-friendly party bags, such as these Sprinkles of Nature Safari Packs?

Are Balloons Bad for the Environment?

Scrap the balloons! Short lived and single use, the average latex balloon takes up to four years to biodegrade. This is the best case – vinyl and Mylar balloons do not break down, as they are made from plastics.

Not only this, but balloons are incredibly bad for wildlife. Birds and fish can mistake these for food which can cause serious internal harm or even death, and they can also get tangled in the strings attached.

What is more, the helium used to blow up balloons and make them ‘float’ is a precious resource that the earth is going to run out. Helium is vital for MRI machines in hospitals and labs, and there is no substitute for this. To create a truly eco-friendly celebration, you want to avoid balloons altogether!

How to Reduce Food Waste at Parties

Perhaps the simplest way to throw an eco-friendly party is through the refreshments. It is so important not to overproduce food, as this ends up being wasted. Always try and plan appropriately for the number of guests invited, you don’t need a cake for twenty if it’s just close family attending!

Similarly, avoid single use plates and other crockery. Choose paper straws for your drinks, and use your standard metal cutlery (this is not easily broken). If baking your own cakes and treats, swap your plastic-based cake liners and cases for reusable silicone varieties, or compostable ones!

If you do end up with leftovers, why not safely store these and take for lunch the next day at work? Try food covers or compostable cling film for quick and easy storage at the end of a busy party.

When planning the actual logistics of the party – think about how you will dispose of the waste. Long gone are the days of chucking everything into a big black bag! Why not set up a recycling point, where guests can put their empty bottles, cans, and food waste. If this is easily accessible, your party will be that much more sustainable. If throwing a garden party and you have a compost heap – this can be a quick and accessible way to dispose of food waste.

By making just one or two swaps, and by considering how to reduce the waste you might produce, you can throw a sustainable party effortlessly! If you purchase reusable decorations, avoid harmful balloons and/or reduce overstock of food - you will also save yourself money! Why not give it a try this bank holiday?