Tips for a Safe and Sustainable Holiday

The Sustainable UF team put together a short list of ways that you can celebrate the holidays while staying safe, reducing waste, eating more plant-based and reflecting on historical context.

1. Make health and safety a priority.

No one wants COVID-19 as a house guest this holiday season. UF Health recommends if you do decide to gather, keep your gatherings small. Or skip the travel altogether and consider gathering virtually for a safer and more sustainable option!

Explore more of UF Health’s recommendations and resources:

2. Incorporate plant-based or vegan recipes into your holiday meals!

Choosing more plant-based meals can contribute to avoiding negative environmental impacts and increasing positive benefits to health. There are countless ways to bring plant-based or vegan dishes to the table this year. Check out this list of vegetarian/vegan holiday recipes compiled by Sustainable UF including a Squash & Brussel Sprout dish and a Vegan Pumpkin Cheesecake for dessert.

3. Reduce waste this holiday season

The family meals, decorations and gifts that come with the holidays also come with a lot of unnecessary waste. Plan ahead this year to reduce single-use items, get creative with gift wrapping and repurposing decorations! Consider using reusable serviceware, plates & napkins during meals. Try repurposing boxes, bags and magazines/newspapers for creative gift wrapping (plus, recycle what you can afterward or store for next year!). You can also think about upcycling common items for holiday decorations as a fun D.I.Y. project with friends or family.

4. Reflect on the history of the holiday and the land that you live on.

The history of holidays such as Thanksgiving is complex. While we can all share the spirit of gratitude, there are additional ways to learn more about and acknowledge this history. Consider taking some time to reflect on what Thanksgiving means to you, research the history of the land you live on and re-imagine the holiday for a more nuanced and contextual celebration.

Want to share this list with friends and family? Find the visual story on our Instagram @sustainableuf for easy sharing!

Published: November 23rd, 2020

Category: Highlights