We covered a blog post a while back in which we covered many ways to make your wedding food more ethical and sustainable. But what about the drinks?! Super important for any party, especially a wedding! Whether you are providing your own drinks or your venue has it covered, there is always a way to make your wedding drinks eco chic.
Please note – we don’t expect people to follow every single one of these guidelines, and understand we can’t make every single thing in our lives ethical (unless we live in a hole in the woods, probably naked and eating leaves?) but maybe, just maybe by supporting one of these ideas, we could help the world a little bit at a time. Here’s how:
one. ditch the plastic – there is too much plastic in the world as it is without adding extra from wedding waste! Think of the ways you can reduce wedding plastic from your drinks. Ditch the plastic straws, cups and bottles. Try and source glass bottled drinks and use real glasses to serve. This can actually work out as a cheaper option than buying plastic glasses as you can hire glasses for free from many UK supermarkets! For DIY style weddings you may want to consider recycling used jam jars to drink out of as well (give each guest a decorated one with their name on to keep all night and as a favour!) If you really want straws, try alternatives such as bamboo or metal.
two. organic drinks – if you are getting married at a venue that source their own drinks, it can be difficult to serve entirely organic drinks. However even if you negotiate a swap out for just one item (such as the prosecco for the drinks reception or the gin for your personalised cocktail) this one change can make a difference! Organic products really do help to preserve our natural environment. From reducing water pollution to keeping land fertile and preserving ecosystems, plus they have a better taste! For those having a DIY wedding or sourcing your own drinks, there are plenty of organic companies out there to provide not only the alcohol but also mixers and hot drinks. Check out the Independent’s guide to the top 10 organic beers 😉
three. shop locally and small – right now is the micro brewers dream. Popping up in the most unexpected places, you can find small companies using local products to produce fantastic local drinks. From beer to gin, wine to whisky, you are sure to find something tasty, local and with a whole lot more meaning than a mass produced drink. Try sourcing drinks from near where you and your other half met for a personal touch.
four. tap water – you really don’t need to serve bottled water at your wedding unless you are getting married somewhere where is is not advisable to drink the tap water. Use glass jugs on tables to provide your guests with plenty of liquid refreshment or place glass drinks dispensers around the venue for a handy post dancing top up.
five. Fairtrade – especially for your after dinner teas and coffees! Fairtrade ensures better prices, decent working conditions and fair terms of trade for farmers and workers. Many UK supermarkets sell Fairtrade wines as well – check out the selections online and look out for offers before your wedding date to stock up in bulk.
six. waste not want not – if you are providing your own drinks or having a totally DIY wedding then you don’t want to be caught short and run out of drinks! And neither do you want to have too much, which may lead to wastage if drinks get left half opened or thrown away. Try using this super handy wedding drinks calculator which will take the pressure off! Also chat to friends who have bought drinks for their own weddings to compare.
seven. order in bulk – what better way to entertain your guests than allowing them to pull their own pints? By sourcing a beer keg (especially from a small, local company!) you not only save on money but reduce the waste of plastic and glass. Once empty they are returned to the brewery for refilling – so eco!
Do let us know how you get on with making your wedding more sustainable in any manner – we love to hear from you! Find more Ethical Bride posts here.
Main image by Wil Stewart