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Greening Your Thanksgiving

Future generations will be thankful for the sustainable choices that are made today

Post Date:11/25/2019 5:30 PM

 Green Your Thanksgiving

Green Your Thanksgiving with these helpful tips:

  • Meal Prep
    • A key component to greening up your Thanksgiving is meal preparation. You will avoid overbuying food, which will reduce your food waste.
    • Think about how many guests you will be having and plan accordingly.



  • Use Reusable Dishes, Cups, Cutlery, and Napkins
    • While it may be easy to turn to single-use disposable items for this holiday, consider the amount of waste that can be reduced if reusable dishes, cups, and cutlery is used instead.
    • Not only do disposable plates and cutlery cause waste, but they also cost you! 
    • Think you're reducing water consumption by having disposable plates? Think again! The average paper plate requires 8 gallons of freshwater to produce. That's a lot of water for one plate! If you have 10 guests, that's 80 gallons of water. Running a loaded dishwasher uses much less, usually about 6 gallons of water total. 
    • Food tastes better on real plates! You've gone through all of the trouble to make an incredible meal, let it taste even better on real dishes. 
    • Use reusable cloth napkins instead of paper towels or paper napkins. 


  • Use Natural and Seasonal Decorations 
    • Decorate your table and home with pine cones, branches, pumpkins, gourds, chrysanthemums, and popcorn-cranberry strings.
    • Go on a nature walk to collect your decorations, it's quite fun! 


  • More vegetables 
    • Hello, side dishes! Did you know that the meat industry emits more greenhouse gas emissions than all of the planes, trains, and automobiles combined? To reduce this, eat more vegetables and less meat. There are so many delicious vegetarian, vegan and plant-based recipes - the options are endless. Who knows, one of these side dishes may be prompted to the main course. 
    • Below are a few fall recipes to inspire you:

  • Get Creative with Leftovers and Use Reusable Containers
    • To reduce and eliminate food waste, get creative with leftovers.
    • Use bones and vegetable trimmings for soup, make a turkey sandwich, or "Leftover Thanksgiving Pot Pie"
    • Use reusable containers for leftovers instead of plastic baggies and plastic wrap. 
    • About to dispose of a food container, such as a tub of sour cream? Clean it out and save it for giving guests leftovers to take home.
    • Save jars and use for leftovers when guests are leaving.



  • Compost Food Scraps 
    • Some food scraps cannot be used as leftovers. Instead of throwing items in the garbage, compost them! For home composts piles, it is usually best to compost plant products and paper products. Avoid meat and dairy unless equipped to handle these items.


  • Get Outside
    • Fall temperatures are wonderful for walks and playing games outside - gather guests outdoors for fresh air and fun.
    • Science has proven that by spending time outside, our happiness boosts. This makes for an even better holiday.
    • Science has also proven that the more time we spend in nature, the more likely we are to care and protect the environment. 
    • By playing outside, you allow guests to step away from technology. By reducing technology use, you reduce energy consumption.


  • Share your tips and tricks for making Thanksgiving greener
    • Tell guests, family, and friends about the sustainable actions you are taking to make your Thanksgiving green. By doing this, you are encouraging others around you to make more sustainable and mindful choices.
    • Share with us! The Dunedin Green Scene would love to hear about how you made your Thanksgiving green. Contact Natalie Henley, the City's Sustainability Coordinator by email or phone, 727-298-3215  x1324 to share your ideas.

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