Hello 2017 and goodbye 2016! Ok, we’re not quite ready to say goodbye to 2016. There are still reminders of 2016 to clear up – in particular, the aftermath of holiday waste materials. There are holiday decorations (lights, trees, packages, displays) and residue of holiday business (leftover food, paper products, trash, etc.) Now is the time to do the right thing and recycle your holiday waste.
There are plenty of ways to make your holiday remnants go away – but it is imperative that you recycle as much as you can.
Did you have a fresh-cut Christmas tree on display in your office or business? Don’t just leave it on the curb! Take it to your community’s recycling center!
Also, while it may be fun for a little while to display the beautiful holiday cards you receive, once the holidays are over, you should consider sending the old cards to St. Jude’s Ranch for Children, a non-profit home for youths that collects old holiday cards for reuse. St. Jude’s Ranch, headquartered in Boulder City, Nevada, recycles used greeting cards and creates new holiday and all-occasion greeting cards, which are sold to raise money for its programs. You can find out more by visiting the program’s website, at https://www.stjudesranch.org/contribute/recycled-card-program/.
Holiday packages – either those you shipped or those you received – may have been mailed packed in Styrofoam peanuts. You can save and re-use them for your own shipping, or you can contact the Plastic Loose Fill Council’s National Peanut Hotline (!) to find a location near you that can re-use the packing peanuts. The Peanut Hotline (yes there really is such a thing) is 800-828-2214, and their website is http://www.loosefillpackagingcom. It’s the national re-use program for plastic packing peanuts – and there are over 1,500 collection sites in the U.S.
Did you have a lot of leftover food and beverages that didn’t get sold or used for the holidays? Check to see if it’s still good, of course, and consider donating it to a local food bank – or, donate money to a local food bank.
If you had holiday lighting, such as strings of lights, and you don’t want to store them anymore, consider recycling them. If they are still in good working condition, consider donating them to Goodwill Industries or The Salvation Army.
Lastly, don’t forget that your local charities – including Goodwill and The Salvation Army – are always on the lookout for “outgrown” toys, clothes and furniture. Making donations to local charities is a great way not only to remove holiday “leftovers” from your business, but to start 2017 on a positive and thoughtful note. Happy New Year!