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How to have a plastic-free picnic

Friday, June 18th 2021, 7:51 am - Celebrate International Picnic Day with these environmentally friendly tips!

It's International Picnic Day, and whether you treat yourself in the backyard or head out to a park for a socially-distanced brunch with a friend, today's also a good time to re-vamp your picnic basket, which for many people is loaded with plastic.

Plastic continues to be a problem because according to Environment and Climate Change Canada, less than 10 per cent of the plastic used in Canada gets recycled.

Without a significant transformation, Canadians will throw away an estimated $11 billion worth of plastic materials annually by 2030.

RELATED: Black plastic can't be recycled for a reason most don't know

In 2019, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau promised to implement a ban on “harmful single-use plastics” such as bags, cutlery, and plates in Canada by the end of 2021. But environmentally-cautious Canadians don’t have to wait to begin reducing their plastic waste.

Here’s how you can throw the perfect plastic-free picnic:

REUSE OLD FOOD JARS

picnic-1956974 - Pexels File photo: Pexels

Pickle and jam jars make for great alternatives to plastic bags when packing up food. Simply give them a good wash and they suddenly become a reusable item in your picnic basket.

DITCH THE WATER BOTTLE

Staying hydrated doesn’t have to include plastic water bottles. Grab a few mason jars and simply add sliced citrus and mint for a refreshing beverage.

AVOID PLASTIC-WRAPPED FRUIT

A no-cut fruit salad makes for the perfect guilt-free sweet treat. Picking up fruit from a local farm or farmer’s market eliminates the use of plastic wrap and bags.

BUY IN BULK

Ready for some protein? Buy your nuts (or snack of choice) in bulk! Most bulk food stores allow you to bring reusable produce bags and storing jars.

AVOID PRE-PACKAGED FOODS

Pre-made salads often come with excessive plastic bags to separate each component. Escape the unnecessary waste by purchasing your produce, dairy, and additional toppings at a farmer’s market or deli. Mix the salad in a canning jar, that doubles as a salad bowl for a delicious, no-mess meal.

Happy eating!

WATCH BELOW: A PLASTIC-FREE KITCHEN

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