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Hertfordshire County Council

Reduce waste this summer

  • Use retro glass bottles of ketchup and mustard. Ditch the plastic squeezy ones. Remember to recycle your bottle once its empty.
  • Support your local butcher and greengrocer. You can buy exactly what you want and avoid extra packaging.
  • Want a meat free meal? Try halloumi cheese on skewer. For a vegan option, try aubergine or cauliflower steaks.
  • Prepare ahead of time. Make pastas, sandwiches and salads in advance instead of buying pre-made ones (in plastic) from shops. This is often cheaper too.
  • Make your own BBQ sauce. Here's a great recipe from BBC Good Food.
  • Ditch the cling film. Use Tupperware or beeswax wraps to cover food instead.
  • Know how many people are coming. You'll be able to plan portions and avoid leftovers. Follow our tips on how to reduce food waste.
  • Invest in reusable cutlery, plates and cups. They can go in the dishwasher and be used again and again. You could use the harder plastic plates or even metal camping-style dishes. Or you could suggest everyone brings their own and takes it home after - people do this with Tupperware, so why not with a plate and cup? For large occasions, consider hiring crockery or glasses. We've got more tips on how to go plastic free.
  • Use cloth napkins. You could buy them from a second-hand shop, or try making your own. When you're finished with them, you can recycle textiles too.
  • Reuse/ recycle your barbeque. Gas or brick barbeques will last you for summers to come. Disposable barbeques can be recycled. Just separate the foil from the mesh and ensure it is clean. Make sure it's cold before placing in your bin! We suggest leaving it for at least 3 hours after the food has been cooked. Consider pouring water or sand over it before taking to your local recycling centre.
  • Put out clearly marked recycling bins for cans and bottles. This will help guests to do the right thing. Check out our details of how to recycle right.
  • Keep food in the fridge/ freezer until needed. Only put out/cook a smaller amount to start with.
  • Give your guests doggy bags. They'll help you to make short work of leftovers.
  • Compost your food waste.
  • Recycle your glass bottles and tin cans. Aluminium and glass can both be recycled again and again without loss of quality.
  • Pick up litter if you are in a public place. Take rubbish bags along with you to ensure you don’t accidentally leave any litter behind.
  • Use vinegar or baking soda to clean your grill. They can be suprisingly effective cleaning products, without the negative environmental impact of harsh cleaning chemicals.
bbq asparagus
veg skewers