Opinion: It's time to ban Christmas crackers

Monday, December 16, 2019

Waste collection and recycling expert Mark Hall thinks Christmas crackers should be banned this year because of the "climate emergency". These are his views and not talkRADIO's.

It is estimated that over 40 million Christmas crackers end up in the bin on December 25.

According to research from BusinessWaste.co.uk, 99 per cent of people said they threw Christmas cracker gifts in the bin at the end of the day.

Just think what goes into a Christmas cracker; the plastic toy, the snap, the shiny paper hat, the ribbons - it's all wasted.

Millions of these are pulled and binned every year, despite us being in the midst of a climate emergency.

This year, families across Britain could give a huge present to the environment and dump the Christmas crackers. How about making your own instead?

All it takes is the cardboard centre of a toilet roll, a bit of tissue paper and some imagination for the gift and joke.

Tip: Raid the Quality Street tub. Get the kids to make them the week before the big day. It'll add to the fun when granny gets a handful of Werther's Originals and a joke about an elephant's bottom.

The festive season creates more plastic waste than any time of year, most of which goes to landfill or is burned – all a horrifying waste of money, resources and energy.

Don't use printed Christmas wrapping paper which can't be recycled. Use plain brown paper instead, or a large roll of white drawing paper. Believe me, your tree will look like something out of a lifestyle magazine on Christmas morning.

As for plastic table cloth… are you mad? Get a real table cloth that you wash in the New Year and use again for Christmases yet to come. Make it a dark colour that doesn't show the stains.

As you can see, most of these ideas require very little change at all, and won't make your Christmas any less enjoyable.