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Baking a Difference. One Loaf at a Time.
Find out how Challah for Hunger is baking a difference, one loaf at a time.
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Greening Your Simcha
When entertaining, celebrating or organising a simcha/event there are plenty of ways to reduce the carbon footprint. Although celebrations can be lavish, and it is hard to make an event completely ‘green’, these guidelines provide some practical suggestions for areas where you can make a difference. Invitations Email invitations if possible, but if you send printed invitations, make sure they are on recycled paper and encourage guests to recycle the invitations. Consider post-card style invitations as these use less card/paper. Ask for replies by phone or email, rather than including a separate reply card. Print with low-toxic dyes or soy ink, double-sided where possible. Travel If possible choose a central location where it is easily accessible on public transport. Encourage people to share cars, particularly if some of the guests are from out of town. If your venue is away from where people live, consider a coach or minibus so guests can travel in fewer cars. If you have guests attending from overseas consider offsetting their carbon. Whilst carbon offsetting is controversial (click here for more information on carbon offsetting), it is better to offset the carbon emissions that are unavoidable, rather than ignoring them. Food Ask your caterer to use seasonal foods and fairtrade products. In the menu include information about the various ingredients, where they were sourced and why. Sticking to a meat free meal will reduce the carbon footprint of your event enormously. If you serve fish ensure it is sourced sustainably. Gifts If you are receiving gifts at your simcha, ask guests not to use wrapping paper. Consider asking your guests for unusual green gifts e.g. to pay for the loft insulation/energy efficient boiler you wouldn’t be able to afford yourself. Rather then consuming more, why not give a gift that will help others and has a real long-term benefit. We recommend the Good Gifts website Crockery and tableware Use non-disposable crockery wherever possible. If choosing paper or plastic, choose goods made with recycled content. Vegware products, made from vegetables, can be ordered on-line here or Green Gate Bio Packaging supplies a wide range of eco-friendly catering disposables, including biodegradable and compostable cups and fibre tableware, in an attempt to reduce the negative environmental impacts of the catering industry. Decorating/waste Try to use natural decorations such as plants and freshly cut local flowers. These can be taken away at the end of the evening and then composted. Consider centrepieces which can be donated or re-used. Make sure everything that can be recycled is. Wasted food, depending on the type, can also be given to charity. If using balloons, consider latex as these are more environmentally friendly; make sure balloons are responsibly discarded after use. Outfits Consider vintage or upcycled fashion choices, or seek out designers working with sustainable natural or organic fabrics.