[Gifted] I am sure we know the sheer amount of waste left over from festivals and many camping trips. With the decrease in the cost of tents, sleeping beds and packs, it seems some people feel that it is simpler to dispose of the items than pack them up to reuse them next time. To tackle part of this issue, The Paper Bag Co has designed and developed a rather nifty (and good-looking!) paper rucksack filled with biodegradable goodies to get you through the festival season and beyond.
Not just a festival bag
While the delightful bag might hold the name ‘Festival Bag’, it is not reserved only for that. It is a perfect addition to urban walking, city breaks and day trips because of its size and well-thought-out design. It also contains some of the most valuable bits and bobs you can repeatedly reuse – think toothbrush, ear plugs and reusable cup (although mine didn’t contain one) are included in the £39.99 price tag. A reasonable price, all things considered, when buying degradable and reusable products.
Waste less, live more
It has been said that festivals generate 23,500 tons of waste annually, and 68% of that goes directly to landfill. This is a horrific fact, considering how popular the festival season is with the mud and music-loving Brits. More often than not, a little bit of conscientious packing of reusables and properly degradable products, as well as disposing of things correctly, can have a massive impact. And this is where the convenience of The Paper Co Festival Bag comes in. It is mainly done for you!
It can be challenging for some to start making a change when it comes to more sustainable choices. There is so much information out there that it can become overwhelming and is quickly overshadowed by the excitement of a weekend in the field with all your mates, some great tunes and a party atmosphere. I’m not excusing anyone for not doing a bit of research, but I do remember what it was like to have ‘better things to do with my time’!
Inside the bag, you can expect lots of goodies that you will need for a festival or camping trip, carefully chosen to be better for the environment than the usual supermarket alternatives.
The wash bag
In the Festival Bag wash kit, you will find all your essentials for keeping clean and tidy while out in the field. A bamboo toothbrush, toothpaste tabs, wax ear plugs, biodegradable wash wipes and expandable bamboo towelettes. All with no plastic in sight, which is a good thing.
The rest of the kit
In the rest of the kit, you have two rolls of environmentally friendly, paper-wrapped, Who Gives a Crap toilet paper, a lovely t-shirt, a degradable poncho and (according to the website) a foldable reusable cup, which is always helpful.
The bag is made from high-quality paper, so it won’t fall apart at the first touch of rain – a vital factor for any UK-based festival goer. To the back is a small pocket for sealing in valuables and a loop inside for clipping keys.
Good starter pack
While the kit is in no way complete, it is a brilliant starter pack for anyone setting out on the journey of leaving no trace. The Paper Bag Co Festival Bag takes a lot of the thinking out of your planning, and the rest can go on to planning which line-ups you want to see and digging the kit from your wardrobe to reuse again.
The most sustainable festival and camping gear is the stuff you already have! Or second-hand items. If you are serious about reducing your impact on the environment and festival scene, think about digging through your wardrobe and cupboards for your own personal festival bag! Use the Festival Bag for inspiration and gather together everything you might need. You can purchase tooth tablets at Lush (Refresher flavour are the bomb!), bamboo toothbrushes at Tescos, and flannels from most shops, all of which you can use repeatedly. For your t-shirt, maybe have a go at tie-dying to jazz it up for the festival and make it stand out! Use your creativity.
While a homemade festival bag might not be half as fancy, it will always be the more environmentally sound and money-saving.
So while I love the idea for anyone starting out, I do think that you can go one better. Using the things you already have are a more significant win. They are already manufactured, you already own them, and the bits you add to them (think reusable cups, bottles and flannels) you can use time and time again. Sustainable products are not just for the outdoors or festivals. They are for every day!
However you pack for your next festival, take a moment to think about your impact and go with the ‘Leave No Trace’ ethos.