10 Tips for Zero-Waste Entertaining
Celebrating a special occasion with your favourite people, or simply want to have a nice get-together? Whatever the occasion, hosting a feast for our nearest and dearest is both fun to organise and participate in, but can be wasteful when you think of all the disposable plates, cutlery, napkins and food that ends up in waste at the end of the event. Aiming for a completely waste-free party may be some work, but lucky for you, we’ve curated 10 tips for zero-waste entertainment to make it easier for your next event!
1. Create a menu plan and budget
Planning ahead and understanding how much to provide and spend on your party puts your best foot forward towards zero-waste entertaining! The last thing you want is to have lots of leftover food and waste! Encourage healthy eating and a lower carbon footprint by avoiding packaged foods as much as possible. Instead, buy fresh ingredients from local vendors and serve food which can be cooked on the spot (this is often part of the fun with hosting parties!), or made ahead of time. Finger food is great for your guests to mingle while having a nibble between conversations
2. Provide separate bins for recycling, compost and general waste with clear labels
Assign designated bins so that there are no questions about what item goes in which bin. Having clear signage makes it easy for your guests to appropriately throw away any waste, and saves you the hassle of sorting out the trash at the end of the event. If your party has compostable dinnerware, ensure guests are informed so that it is wasted accordingly!
3. Compostable utensils and plates
We understand it’s difficult to provide every guest with metal cutlery and proper dinnerware, not to mention the massive clean-up afterwards! If you’re hosting for a large crowd and arranging crockery for everyone isn’t feasible, opt for compostable plates, cutlery, and even straws!
4. Make your own soft drinks
A home soda machine gives you the ability to create different flavours of soft drinks - perfect for drinking as is or mixing with your favourite liquor! Additionally, the reusable soda bottles can be used for serving and storage which will greatly reduce plastic bottle waste.
5. Use beverage dispensers and jugs instead of bottled drinks
Swap out the esky full of plastic bottles of water and aluminium cans of beer with beverage dispensers. There are acrylic versions available which are lightweight and perfect for fruit-infused water or juices. If you’re serving lots of beer, consider renting a keg. Not only will this elevate the look of your party, you’ll do mother nature proud by saving lots of bottles and cans!
6. Keep your wine bottles cool with the Swag Quick Chill Bag
Whether you’re organising or attending an event, no wine enthusiast would say “no thanks” to chilled wine! Simply place your wine bottle in the Quick Chill Bag, run it under a tap to dampen, then place in the freezer for at least 20 minutes before heading out or serving. You’ll be the star of every party for providing chilled wine at any occasion!
Optional: pair the quick chill bag with the carry bag for easy transportation!
7. Protect your food with Food Cover Swags
Fend off unwanted bugs without the use of single-use plastic wrap! These are made 100% of cotton, and the corners of each Food Cover Swag have a nifty pocket to put a pebble into to keep the wind from blowing it away. Our Food Cover Swags have every event (literally) covered!
8. Replace paper napkins with linen
Paper napkins are a huge waste, and they’re not nearly as effective as cloth. High quality fabric napkins are easy to clean, and will last several years. These can also be folded to impress your guests - both practical and elegant! Our Swag Non-Paper Towels are a fantastic substitute for napkins as well!
9. Rent party supplies
If you only entertain occasionally, renting is often more cost effective than purchasing party supplies that later have to be stored or sent to landfill after use. Renting can not only significantly reduce your event’s environmental impact, but can also save you the hassle of sourcing your own party supplies. Most party rental companies can provide decorations, tables, chairs, tablecloths, cloth napkins, drink dispensers, glassware, crockery, platters, and serving utensils. Pimp your party, ditch disposable dishware, and reduce, reuse, and rent!
10. Wrap leftovers in the Swag Wrap
Avoid single-use plastic wrap and foil and instead make the switch to the Swag Wraps. These are fantastic for wrapping up leftover blocks of cheese, half-eaten baguettes and other fruits and vegetables. This will save you fridge space and give you less dishes to clean when you finish with the leftovers!
Implementing any of these is a big step in the right direction towards a greener planet, and will have guests raving about your party afterwards! Be satisfied knowing that you can hang out with your favourite people completely zero-waste!