Some consumers are dropping wrapping altogether. As part of a survey released last month, half of U.S. participants said they will give holiday gifts without wrapping this year to avoid using paper, according to Accenture, a consulting firm. Nearly two-thirds said they would happily receive gifts without gift wrapping.
Here are some wrapping and recycling ideas:
Choose recyclable gift wrap: Papers that include foil, plastic coating, cellophane and glitter are not recyclable, according to the American Forest and Paper Association. The association says a basic rule of thumb is to crumple up the paper; if it stays in a tight ball, it’s paper-based and can be recycled. Kula, Hawaii-based Wrappily uses old printing presses to print styles on recyclable newsprint. A three-sheet set of their paper is $10. Hallmark sells a set of four rolls — 35.2 feet in total — for $14.99. Paper Source says its stone paper can be recycled; it costs $9.95 for a 10-foot roll.
Wrap with fabric: An ancient craft in Japan is gaining converts elsewhere. Ten Thousand Villages, a fair-trade retail chain, sells gift wrap made from saris that are recycled by artisans in Bangladesh. The company says sales have been growing steadily since the wraps were introduced in 2013; so far this year, sales are up 20 percent over 2018. The 26-square-inch wrap sells for $12.99.
Recycle it all: New Jersey-based recycling company TerraCycle promises to recycle everything — including ribbons, bows, tissue paper and wrapping paper with glitter — in its Gift Zero Waste Box. The company sends customers an empty box with a paid return tag; once it’s full of gift wrap, customers send it back. TerraCycle says it has processes for even hard-to-recycle products like ribbon, which it uses for insulation or melts into plastic pellets. A medium box is the most popular size for family gatherings; it costs $147.