Hampshire County Council is encouraging consumers to spare a thought for the environment by looking at how much extra packaging their gifts are packed in this Christmas.
Hampshire’s Trading Standards is particularly interested in on-line Christmas purchases where excessive packaging may have been used. For example - small items in large boxes with the excess space filled with paper or air filled bags as packing material, or extra unnecessary plastic and polystyrene.
While a certain amount of packaging is necessary to protect products during transport, there are laws which aim to limit the excessive use of packaging across the range of consumer products. This has clear environmental benefits in reducing waste and transport costs and helps ensure products are presented in a more truthful way.
Packaging laws require manufacturers and retailers to use the minimum volume and weight of packing consistent with safety, hygiene and customer acceptance. However, packaging must not give a false impression about the size of the contents.
Over the course of a year, the average household throws away around a tonne of rubbish, but understandably this peaks over the festive period. In Hampshire, this amounts to a total of almost 600,000 tonnes of household waste every year, and while more than 91% of this is diverted from landfill, everyone can still do their bit to reduce the amount of rubbish they throw away.
If you spot a product this Christmas which seems to use more than its fair share of packaging, call the Citizens Advice consumer helpline on 08454 04 05 06 or email email@example.com
For more information visit the Trading Standards website.