Make your Big Lunch waste free

Make your Big Lunch waste free
Make your Big Lunch waste free

Participants in The Big Lunch 2012 are being urged by Zero Waste Scotland to plan a zero waste lunch on Sunday, June 2.

Gardner Memorial are planning a coronation themed event at St Ninian’s Square after the great success of last year’s Jubilee event.

Zero Waste Scotland is one of several organisations across Scotland that has pledged its time and energy to help to make The Big Lunch a success. Together with The Big Lunch team in Scotland, they have developed a handy guide, stuffed full of hints and tips from its volunteers and staff so Big Lunchers have zero excuses and lots of good reasons to go waste-free. Iain Gulland, director of Zero Waste Scotland says: “We’re delighted to be working with The Big Lunch again. There are lots of things people can do to make their events as waste-free as possible. Nobody likes food waste or litter so I hope Big Lunchers find our suggestions helpful when planning their events and they have a great time.”

Planning an event with a waste-free theme to begin with makes it much easier and Big Lunchers can challenge their community to find creative ways to cut down on waste during and after the lunch.

Here are their top tips:

1 - Tablecloths – Instead of throwing away metres of paper cloth, bring anything from old curtains to bed sheets and decorate them with fabric paint. The children will love it! The main thing is to try to use something that can be washed after the event and used again.

2 - Decorations - Hold an upcycle / reuse craft night (there are loads of ideas on The Big Lunch website) and invite people over to make decorations for your event. These decorations can be reused on another occasion or at Christmas. Create a community decorations box so everyone can share them.

3 - Crockery and Cutlery – Ask neighbours and friends to bring their own real crockery and cutlery along so you can cut down on paper plate waste. It’s very on trend to have a vintage mis-matched look to your tables.

4 - Recycle – If your local authority provides you with different bins for particular kinds of waste, ask three or four households to put their bins out for the recycling. You could challenge the children on your street to make sure they’re filled appropriately!

Big Lunch organiser Alex Macgregor, from Transform Dundee and Angus Zero Waste Volunteer Programme, suggests: “Whilst at the Big Lunch talk to those around you and agree to meet once a month (or week if you are very keen) and have a little Big Lunch. I have always found that the more guests you have the less waste at the end of the day, and you can always provide doggie bags if your guests can’t eat all the food you make. This way at least you will get to have a good meal and have like-minded guests.”