The environment group EcoWaste Coalition has called on Filipinos to recycle the packaging of their holiday gifts and “not to simply rip, crumple and toss such useful resources in the trash bin.”
“A gram of waste prevention is worth a kilo of environmental solution,” Tin Vergara, zero waste campaigner for EcoWaste, said in a statement. “We urge recipients to value not only what is inside the gift, but also the materials used to wrap it.”
“A little creativity will help in trimming down the volume of packaging materials sent to dumps or landfills for disposal,” she added.
EcoWaste said bags, boxes, cards, hampers, packets, wrappers and ribbons could still be reused for different purposes.
Let us count the ways:
— Paper or plastic gift bags can be reused as carry bags or as pouches for school supplies, class projects, office needs and the like.
— Gift boxes, too, can be reused as organizers to store small toys, trinkets and other knick-knacks, photos and mementos, needles, threads, buttons and other sewing essentials, CDs and DVDs, as well as bills and many other things.
— Christmas cards can be turned into bookmarks and gift tags or used as resources for children’s eco-art and as materials for Christmas card trees and other decorations for the next yuletide season.
— Hampers, particularly native baskets or plastic trays, can be reused as containers for fresh fruits, snacks and ornamental plants.
— Even Christmas money envelopes, or “angpao” red packets, can be reused to keep gift cards and tags, spare ID photos, or turned into bookmarks.
— Wrapping paper can be reused as book, notebook or photo album cover and as materials for art projects.
— Ribbons can be reused as hair bows, garland or leis for festive activities, room ornaments, or simply saved for upcoming birthdays or for future Christmases.