5 reasons why it's time to bin the wrapping paper this Christmas

Share article on...





Support us from £3 a month and fund new journalism on topics that matter to you

Become a Patron

5 reasons why it's time to bin the wrapping paper this Christmas


Want to have a plastic free Christmas - or a greener one? Wrapping paper isn't party time for the planet come festive season so this is why it's important to find alternatives.

Georgina Wilson-Powell

Mon 19 Nov 2018

We all want to give beautifully wrapped presents but it’s time to rethink using the rolls of wrapping paper that we’ve all dependent on for years. We’ve partnered with reusable wrapping paper, Wrag Wrap, to look at the impact our wrapping habit has on the planet.

5 reasons why it's time to bin the wrapping paper

Keep rollin’

The UK gets through 100 million rolls of wrapping paper each Christmas - approximately 227,000 miles of the pretty paper stuff. That’s enough to wrap the equator nine times.

5 Reasons Not To Use Wrapping Paper

We use enough wrapping paper each year to wrap the world nine times

It’s not like other paper

As you’re slumped on the sofa half covered in discarded wrapping paper, while the cat settles down under it for a snooze, it’s tempting to think that it can all be bundled up and shoved in the recycling bin. Sadly, that’s not the case.

The Sellotape, plastic ribbons and metallic or glitter on the paper generally make it impossible to recycle so the only option is landfill or incineration.

Think of the trees

While we might all print less at work and send less letters, Christmas time sees us all go a little crazy on the paper front. It’s estimated by DEFRA that around 50,000 trees are cut down each year to make enough paper to wrap our presents.

The UK’s Committee on Climate Change released a report earlier this month (November 2018) that said we need to commit to planting twice as many trees by 2020 to help capture carbon and slow down the impact of climate change.

Click here for 7 more reasons why we need to plant more trees

Reusable wrapping paper wrag wrap

Cut down your carbon emissions by not using wrapping paper that will end up in landfill

Think of the emissions

Most of the UK’s paper comes from Scandinavia so each roll of wrapping paper has an air mile footprint, while Greenpace found that the production process emits 3.5kg of CO2 to make one kilogram of wrapping paper.

Stop the sticky tape

Wrapping paper needs Sellotape / sticky tape to hold it together which isn’t recyclable. If you’re trying to do a plastic free Christmas then don’t fall down at the last hurdle over the sticky stuff. 

Small bits of plastic like sticky tape often end up in the sea, breaking down into microplastics and infecting our food chains, waterways and marine wildlife. Why does this matter again? There are eight million tonnes of plastic in our oceans.

Reusable wrapping paper wrag wrap

Wrag Wrap is partially made from recycled plastic bottles

So what can be used to wrap things up?

Wrag Wrap is an innovative, reusable alternative to wrapping paper made using recycled plastic bottles. It is designed to be used again and again so it won’t add to the single use plastic catastrophe. And it doesn't need any sticky tape or ribbons to hold it together. Each year it brings out new festive and non-festive patterns. 

Want to know how to wrap with it? See our Instagram's IGTV or on YouTube.

Comment on this article

What to Do Next

Subscribe To

Stay up to date with all the latest eco news and features. We plant trees for every subscriber. Every 100th subscriber wins their own tree.

Support Us On

From £3 a month. Help us invest in new journalism on topics that matter to you.

Join Our Facebook

Ask questions and share tips, recipes and your green wins in our super friendly Facebook community, the pebble pod.

Support us from £3 a month and fund new journalism on topics that matter to you

Become a Patron