DECANTED: TOP 5 SUSTAINABLE CHRISTMAS GIFTS
There’s no doubt about it: you have to start planning those Christmas gifts, you can’t put it off any longer!
We know how you’re feeling at Brown Bag Wines – the last-minute dash to the shops on Christmas Eve is all too common for us! But with 2020 bringing us a year of firsts, and the world becoming more and more aware of the growing dangers of irreversible environmental damage, you may find yourself in the same boat as many others this year – how to keep your Christmas gifts sustainable.
So whether you have an eco-conscious person to buy for or you’re looking for gifts that will reduce waste, we’ve collected a few sustainable gift ideas to get you started. From small stocking-fillers to a special present, there is plenty to sink your teeth into in our top five sustainable Christmas gifts this year.
There’s a massive push in Singapore and across the world to cut down on single-use plastics, whether that’s the bottle of water you had with lunch or the plastic wrap covering your food in the fridge. Whilst some plastic is recyclable, not all of the waste we create is, putting a considerable strain on the environment and our energy resources. No doubt the eco-conscious person in your life will already be talking about this, but it’s something that more and more of us will be thinking about this festive season.
The good news is there are some brilliant products out there to help in this mission, and they’ll make an excellent gift. You can buy water bottles that cut down on plastic and keep water cool in stores across the island – we love this roundup from the Smart Local. For something more unique, try beeswax wrap (in place of plastic wrap) or solid shampoo and conditioner bars – things your eco-conscious family member may not have thought of!
For excellent reusable goods in the kitchen, bathroom and around the house, the team at The Sustainability Project have a fantastic range of reusable goods, including cutlery, bento boxes, collapsible cups and more.
What better way to give a sustainable gift than by cutting out the middle man and going straight to the cause? A donation to a local charity with sustainability as their focus is sure to brighten the faces of your friends and family this Christmas. Furthermore, the money will be making a real difference to the future of our planet.
Check out the great work Zero Waste are doing – leading the (much-needed) drive towards zero waste in Singapore. The Center For A Responsible Future hosts events, tours and much more in their mission to encourage more people to make environmentally sustainable choices. Or take a look at the Singapore Environment Council. This non-profit organisation does a tremendous amount of work across Singapore, from training and accreditations to island-wide eco campaigns. All three accept donations.
We could go on, as there are so many charities and organisations doing great work around sustainability in Singapore. For more ideas, there’s a nice little roundup here from Green Future.
We don’t need to tell you that 2020 has been hard on businesses, both in Singapore and internationally – particularly so for smaller, independent stores. Christmas marks a wonderful opportunity to share some love with your favourite stores – stores that are often at the forefront of sustainability drives. So whether it’s zero-waste, bulk stores like Eco.le, ethical and eco-friendly corporate gifts from The First Green Store or even just your favourite book shop, spending your dollars with these guys this Christmas is a great choice.
Check out The Green Collective, a collection of sustainable brand owners that showcase some of the best independent and environmentally-conscious brands out there. They have a brilliant range of products – you’re sure to find something to please your eco-friendly friend.
Sustainability goes hand-in-hand with organic farming. Reducing the use of harmful chemicals in farming is often closely related to other sustainable practices in food production, from the reduction in farming waste to farmers taking greater care in the environment surrounding their land.
In wine, we often talk about organic, biodynamic or natural winemaking methods. Still, it all boils down to the same thing – minimal-intervention with nature and ensuring the vineyards contribute to a healthy ecosystem. If you make it your mission to hunt down and buy organic, whether that’s wine or other food and drink, you’re going a long way to supporting sustainable producers.
There are plenty of Singaporean brands out there making and selling great organic producer, and many restaurants serving exclusively organic menus. If you’re giving a gift though, you might want something extra special. We love the bean-to-bar chocolate from Lemuel Chocolate, the ethically sourced coffee from Common Man Coffee Roasters and (of course!) our collection of minimal-intervention wines from across the world. All these products retain a commitment to the best organic produce, treating producers fairly and sharing the vision of sustainability with their customers. Best of all – they are all delicious and will make a beautiful gift this Christmas.
There’s more than one way to reuse waste materials. Some very creative people are taking their waste materials and ‘up-cycling’ – turning their old materials into something a little more special. Everything from art pieces to hang on the wall, to glasses to drink that outstanding wine from, are being made across Singapore with waste materials – an exciting part of the sustainability movement.
We love the work from the team at Refind, where beautiful glassware and art installation pieces are made from Singapore’s used glass bottles. The pieces from designer JJ Chuan at Rehyphen is incredibly unique – old cassette tapes are reworked into posters, art and more. For fashion, check out wearables from Muta.wear, shoes from Indosole and swimwear from August Society – all use unwanted materials to create something brilliant (and help the environment out whilst they do).
If your gift recipient is a creative type themselves, SG Art Class and Arts For All both run workshops where participants can get hands-on with their up-cycled goods and create something intriguing. Whatever you chose, we’re sure that your sustainable art will be a brilliant gift this season.
Shop ‘till you drop
There you have it – five great gift ideas for the eco-warrior in your family this Christmas. No excuses anymore, it’s time to go out and complete those shopping lists. Whether it’s a reusable bottle, delicious organic producer or a donation to a great cause, we’re sure your sustainable gift will be a welcome choice this year.
If your ears pricked at the sound of delicious organic wines for your loved one, don’t hesitate to get in touch to see how we can help you out this festive season. We’ve made it super easy to give some of our sustainable wines.