Spring is the most popular time of year to have a picnic. With longer days and fair, sunny weather, it’s a great time to enjoy the outdoors by laying out a blanket in the park and packing some food for everyone to enjoy. Picnics, however, often come with their fair amount of waste, from paper plates and plastic cups to Ziploc or paper bags. This can be off-putting if you’re trying to minimize your waste in 2020. Fortunately, there are resources and tips that you can use to keep picnic waste to a minimum, and you’ll even have less to clean up before you leave!

BYOB (Bring Your Own Bottle)

Planning a picnic with a few friends or with family? Ask them to bring their own water bottles, rather than buying a pack of solo cups. Water bottles can be washed and reused, and it also allows everyone to bring their own personal taste to the picnic. If you don’t want to ask everyone to bring their own water bottles, or you’re feeling a little fancy, bring reusable cups and mugs from home. Either way, you rid yourself of the issue of one-and-done cups.

Pack with Tupperware

Rather than packing sandwiches in Ziploc bags or salads in big bowls with plastic wrap along the top, pack your food in tupperware. Tupperware will be sturdier anyway, which means that your food will be better protected along the way and that much more delicious when you actually dig in to eat. You can even bring an element of potluck to your picnic by asking everyone to bring something of their own in tupperware, so one person doesn’t get stuck doing all the dishes after the picnic.

Recycle What You Can’t Save

So maybe you’re not able to go zero waste. Maybe you need to bring plastic cups or maybe you just wanted to bring a cooler with your favorite sodas. As long as the single use products are recyclable, you can still ensure that your picnic has as little waste as possible. After the picnic, gather everything recyclable into one bag or container and drop it off at the nearest recycling center or simply bring it home to drop off in your own complimentary recycling bin. Have anything tricky to recycle? Brazos Valley Trash Valet & Recycling accepts more materials than the competition, including plastics #1-7.

Your picnic is a great opportunity to celebrate spring, time with family, and of course your favorite foods. But that doesn’t mean you have to miss out on your usual good, eco-friendly practices. With these tips and a few creative solutions, you can have a picnic that’s as eco-friendly as it is enjoyable. Need help with your waste management at home? Contact Brazos Valley Trash Valet & Recycling today to sign up for our weekly trash pickup with a complimentary recycling bin.