Design:

How Brands are Embracing a more Sustainable Christmas

Mandy Bayliss
  • Senior Graphic Designer
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With Christmas traditionally being the season of excess, there has been a huge shift in mindset to creating a more sustainable alternative. 

Did you know that 227,000 miles of wrapping paper is thrown away each year, and 1 billion Christmas cards are also put in the bin instead of being recycled? Furthermore, 300,000 tonnes of card packaging is said to be used during the festive season, which is enough to cover London’s Big Ben almost 260,000 times! Eye-opening statistics indeed.

From renting Christmas trees, buying gifts with a lower environmental impact and swapping tinsel for natural decorations in our homes, consumers are becoming more eco-conscious than ever. And some of our favourite brands are too. By making ongoing efforts to minimise waste – from creating recyclable/reusable packaging, removing glitter or eliminating single-use plastic – the results can be eco-friendly AND beautiful. Let’s take a look at how a select few are embracing a more sustainable Christmas:

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Selfridges are removing plastic packaging from their own-brand Christmas food range and replacing it with recyclable card and NatureFlex, a cellulose film developed by Futamura which looks like plastic but is made from responsibly sourced wood pulp and is home-compostable. Earlier this year, Selfridges announced that palm oil has been removed from their own-brand grocery products. They are also responding to increased demands for plant-based food, with new vegan offerings for Christmas.

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2. Nutella

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Nutella jars have received a festive makeover too. Alongside the larger Christmas jars, you can now buy a recyclable glass jar adorned with a festive scene which glows in the dark! And once the Nutella has gone, you can use the jar again and again.

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Holiday cups are here! And Starbucks have released a seasonal reusable cup (as well as four additional designs), each one a visual treat each time you grab your coffee fix. The current cups are made partly from recycled material but are more difficult to recycle due to the plastic lining, but Starbucks are trialling recyclable and compostable cups. As part of their continuing environmental efforts, Starbucks has also pledged to phase out plastic straws by the end of 2020.

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4. Cadbury

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The run-up to Christmas is a great time to get creative with design or self-promotion. Fun and festive packaging design can give an instant refresh, allowing brands to create awareness, feature seasonal variations of existing products – and put a smile on customers faces!

Here is a very Christmassy take on some well-known Cadbury favourites – a clever play on words all perfectly packaged in a cardboard stocking.

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Dunkin’ also have a seasonal offering using the brand’s iconic pink. Featuring cheerful words on their cups to reflect the holiday season in the same style as the brand name, they also feature their delicious-looking donuts to mimic Christmas decorations and sprinkles as snowflakes.

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Here at gm. we are embracing the move towards a more sustainable Christmas; this year we have opted to go for digital over print. Our creative design team have been busy updating our logo with Christmas-inspired design that uses hand-drawn illustrative elements.

We are all making changes wherever we can to do our bit for the environment, during the festive season and throughout the rest of the year. How are you working towards a more sustainable Christmas this year? Tweet us @gmdesignltd!

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