Eco-Friendly Thanksgiving

Published November 01, 2021
Keep America Beautiful shared 7 ways to celebrate an eco-friendly Thanksgiving. The holidays are a very wasteful time so please consider small changes you can make to reduce, reuse, and recycle during the season. Below are some great tips, however, there are certainly more. Find out what works for you and your family!
  1. Go natural. Decorate with nature. Bring pine branches, pinecones, acorns, and colorful leaves into your home. It will add fragrant beauty to your table. And after the holiday, these decorations can all be returned to nature. 
  2. Shop locally. Try shopping at a farmer’s market near you. Local foods require fewer greenhouse gases to get to you and are usually grown on smaller farms using more sustainable practices.
  3. Reuse like your grandma did. Set the table with reusable dish dishes and cloth napkins. If single-use is your choice, be sure to purchase disposable plates, cups, napkins, and utensils made from 100 percent recycled or compostable materials. 
  4. Reduce food waste. Tons of food will be scraped into the garbage this Thanksgiving. Start with smaller portions to reduce this waste.  
  5. Repurpose. One of the best parts of Thanksgiving dinner is the leftovers. Store in reusable containers with reusable lids, and try making a delicious stock for soups, chilis, and stews with what is left of the turkey. 
  6. Recycle. The aluminum trays used for baking the turkey (if you use one) are recyclable. Cleaning these pans can be a bit of a chore, but it’s a big piece of aluminum worth recycling. NRC also encourages people to avoid plastic! 
  7. Give back to the community. Volunteer at a food bank or donate extra unused food to a shelter. If food banks are not allowing volunteers, grocery shop for a neighbor in need. Giving back to those around you is a powerful feeling.