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Black Friday Plastic Waste

BY CHLOE SMITH  / November 20, 2020

The holidays are around the corner, which means a lot of food, fun, and shopping. One of the country’s biggest buying days? Black Friday. It’s a day when consumers barrel down store doors, to fill up their carts with heavily packaged products that they probably don’t need.

The Unnecessary Waste

Unfortunately, with huge shopping sprees comes a huge amount of waste. Black Friday is known for being a day to buy presents for the upcoming holiday season. Over time, many people began purchasing things simply because they were on sale, and loading their carts with gifts that were unwanted or unnecessary. Over the years, fights have even broken out in stores over sought-after sale items.

Calling a shopping cart full of fun gifts unnecessary may seem a little grinch-like, but the truth is that Black Friday has morphed into a day of tremendous waste. With miles of plastic packaging wrapped around department store products, and an overwhelming amount of unneeded travel and purchases, Black Friday has become an almost embarrassing tradition of the holiday season.

Know the Stats

Reassessing Black Friday

According to Greenpeace, even the cheapest items have a high cost to the environment. Many people use Black Friday as an excuse to upgrade their technology. They’ll get the newest edition of phones, laptops, and other big-ticket items -- but producing these gadgets requires minerals and materials that cause a huge impact on the environment. It is estimated that one smartphone requires over 14 tons of water to produce, and over 190 square feet of land.

When it comes to textiles, chances are 84% of them will end up in a landfill.The truth is that impulse purchases of fast-fashion and other materials are often quickly thrown away. All the other products lining the department store shelves see similar fates -- not to mention the huge amount of packaging that holds all of these items.

Many people have begun to acknowledge the wasteful and frivolous parts of Black Friday, but what is the solution to a long-standing tradition of excessive spending and waste?

At Terraseed, we mulled over how we could participate in the holiday in an authentic way -- and ultimately decided we couldn’t. That’s why we chose to skip Black Friday, and instead raise awareness about the negative impact the consumer holiday has on the environment. We urge you to reassess your plans, and consider environmentally-friendly alternatives to the heavily packaged items found at department stores.

How to Shop Mindfully this Season

Here are some tips for reducing your waste this holiday shopping season:

➡  Consider upcycling or opting for nice used items
➡  Invest in higher-quality goods that will last longer
➡  Buy locally made presents (try checking out a local farmers market or small business)
➡  Try eco-friendly products that don’t utilize plastics, and have a smaller carbon footprint

Choosing Sustainable Alternatives

Yes, In the upcoming months, we hope you will consider gifting a Terraseed subscription to your vegan friends and family. Our completely compostable vegan multivitamin was crafted with the intention to reduce waste, and support vegans to continue living healthy, sustainable lives.

In the meantime, we mostly encourage you to reevaluate your shopping plans this holiday season. What’s unnecessary? What can be swapped for a more sustainable alternative? And what can I wrap it in that is not single-use and unrecyclable? You are capable of making a massive amount of difference with the small changes you make throughout your life. This holiday season, consider what you can do for the earth.

Learn more about Terraseed, the 100% biodegradable multivitamin for vegans.

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