Zero Waste Eating: The Best Tips and Tricks for a Sustainable Picnic

There is nothing better than a picnic to enjoy a sunny day with friends and family. By the park, in the wood, or by the beach, let’s take a deep breath and take your time to relax. It sounds like a dream, right? Well, do not turn it into a nightmare because of the waste! Picnics are a lovely experience, but they often come with a side of waste, from single-use utensils to disposable packaging. Do not worry, in this article, we will help you to unlock the formula for the perfect zero-waste picnic, without compromising on taste or convenience.

Choose Reusable Essentials

Ditch the disposable plates, cups, and utensils. Opt for reusable options made from stainless steel, wood, or bamboo. Pack some cloth napkins that you can just wash and reuse. Although we know that buying a whole new picnic set can be expensive, so the best solution is to bring your own kitchen supplies (cutlery, glasses, etc. ). However, if you're hosting a larger picnic, consider using compostable serveware made from materials like sugarcane, or cornstarch. These options break down naturally and can be composted and recycled.

Eco-Friendly Packing

Rely on eco-friendly materials to wrap and transport food. Instead of plastic wrap and aluminum foil, which are quite difficult to recycle, prefer beeswax wraps or silicone food covers to wrap your sandwiches, fruits, and snacks. For larger items like salads or pasta dishes, consider using airtight containers that prevent spills and leaks. Invest in a good cooler and some ice packs to use over and over again to maintain your food and beverages without the need for disposable ones.

Zero-Waste Food Choices

When planning your picnic menu, focus on zero-waste foods that require minimal packaging. Prefer to cook your meal at home, you will be able to control the quality of the food and the type of packaging. Opt for whole fruits like apples, oranges, or berries, which do not require a specific wrapping, or cookies, granola, and sweets that can be stored in reusable containers. Prepare sandwiches, wraps, or salads with locally sourced, organic ingredients to support sustainable agriculture and reduce your carbon footprint. Not only will you reduce waste, but you'll also enjoy the satisfaction of indulging in your culinary creations. In addition, consider using some leftovers or repurposing them, to be fully engaged in your sustainable picnic commitment! If you have difficulty finding the inspiration for your leftover recipes check out WIN Sustainably Instagram and TikTok accounts, we are all about sharing new eco-friendly ideas and recipes!

Pro tip: if you organized your outing last minute do not hesitate to download the WIN Sustainably for discounted and sustainable meal on the go!

Select your location and decide which meal to save today. Pick up the food with your reusable bag and enjoy your eco-friendly picnic!  

Beverage Solutions

Single-use plastic bottles are a major source of picnic waste. Bring with you a reusable water bottle, and a thermos with homemade tea or coffee and share them, with friends and family. If you cannot renounce to soft drinks or juices, prefer to use aluminum or glass, and always clean up before you leave your picnic spot!

Pro tip: to recognize your cup write your name on it with a marker, if it is a disposable one, like this you won’t have to get a new one every time you want to drink. Otherwise, get a set of reusable ones with different colors and everybody will choose their favorite one!  

Clean-Up Station

Bring with you a designated bag for the dirty utensils, you will wash them once arrive home. For all the reaming props bring some bags to separate your trash, the compostable, recyclable, and non-recyclable ones. Practice the "leave no trace" principle and ensure to take back everything you brought to the picnic site. If you come across any litter left by others, consider picking it up to leave the area cleaner than you found it.

Share your adventure

Share your zero-waste picnic journey with friends and family. Use social media to document your waste-free adventure and inspire others to adopt sustainable practices. Tag WIN Sustainably and share the #SustainablePicnicHero, we would love to show your progress to the community! Don’t forget to tell us all about your sustainability picnic tips and tricks, and let us know if we have inspired you to make a greener choice.

Encourage your picnic companions to bring their own reusable items, and adopt a sustainable approach to picnicking! Collectively we can make a positive impact on the environment. Remember that a zero-waste picnic is not only a delightful way to enjoy nature's beauty but also an opportunity to make a meaningful contribution to a sustainable planet. By opting for reusable essentials, choosing waste-conscious food options, and practicing responsible clean-up, you can enjoy a guilt-free picnic that leaves nothing but joyful memories and a grateful environment behind. So, pack your sustainable picnic basket and relish the joy of a zero-waste outdoor feast!