Trying to help the environment can seem really daunting these days, especially when your social media feeds are full of videos of sea creatures choking on trash and depressing studies about the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. Environmental news like this can make even the toughest eco-warrior feel like saving the planet is a lost cause.
Luckily, you can do something besides curling up in a ball on the floor and feeling hopeless. Reducing plastic pollution takes simple daily choices - we've already normalized bringing reusable shopping bags around town and refusing plastic straws at restaurants. Simple and easy commitments to sustainability can catch on quickly and change the way we think about plastics.
This summer, we challenge you to ditch single-use plastics at your backyard shindigs to cut back on the unnecessary waste. Swap your plastic plates, red plastic party cups, and disposable silverware for durable, reusable, and sustainable alternatives. Enjoy your summer get togethers knowing your plates, cups, and utensils aren't going into the belly of a whale - because nothing says "PARTY TIME" like saving the earth!
If you're like us, seeing plastic or styrofoam plates brought out at a backyard picnic or camp dinner makes you cringe. Single-use plates are too flimsy to hold all your food at once, so you have to keep making trips to the potluck table while balancing your drink and hoping your full plate doesn't flop before you make it back to your seat. Then these so-called "plates" only end up piled up in the trash at the end of the night, barely able to make it through a single meal.
Instead of whipping out the pack of dollar store plates when hosting a meal, break out some sturdy reusable plates at your next party and be the hero of the barbecue. Invest in some Infinity plates for durable and stackable plates perfect for any meal. If you think disposable plates are the only kid-friendly option, check out the Infinity Divided Plate for littler diners. Or if your cabin or vanlife aesthetic requires something more, the elegant Enamelware Plate might be right up your sustainable alley (and it's dishwasher safe!). You've probably never said "let's eat" and "let's save the planet" in the same sentence, but now you can.
When it comes to single-use plastic waste, plastic cups especially suck. You'd think we've moved away from disposable cups now that just about everyone carries a reusable water bottle and travel coffee mug. But no; party hosts still offer a stack of red plastic cups next to the keg or water pitcher.
Leave those cups behind in your college days and invest in some reusable party glasses for entertaining your guests. Colorful cups like the Glacier Stainless Pints help your friends avoid drink mixups without Sharpie-ing their nicknames on the side. They're also tough as nails, and (unlike us) can withstand years of partying and look just as good as they did on day one. For a classier crowd try the Glacier Stainless Stemless Wine Glass because even box wine tastes fancy out of one of those babies. No matter what you choose, you can drink and be merry knowing you're keeping those awful plastic cups out of the landfill.
Last but not least, you need utensils at your backyard meal. Why waste your time trying to eat with those dreadful plastic forks or cut anything tougher than Jell-o with a plastic party "knife"? If we're already on the refusing plastic straws train, ditching plastic to-go utensils should be the next step.
Reusable utensils are perfect to stash in your car, store at the office, and distribute at your backyard barbecue. Grab some all-purpose and durable individual forks, spoons, and knives and build your own silverware set for the backyard or the campground. Keep the Three Piece Ring Cutlery Set on hand for the drive-thru, tailgate party, or any other snack attack and never touch a wasteful plastic fork inside a plastic bag again. For a picnic or a weekend at the cabin, try the sturdy and dishwasher safe Pioneer Cutlery Set. Whatever cutlery you choose, remember to just say no to eating with forks that snap at the sight of a juicy steak.
Not only will you be able to enjoy your get-together knowing you're not adding to a landfill, you won't have to carry a big garbage bag full of plates and cups out to the curb. That's a win-win!