An eco friendly barbecue
Is there such a thing as an eco friendly barbecue, or is it a contradiction in terms? Do we have to give up one of our nation’s favourite past times if we are to be dark green?
I’ve been thinking about this and have come up with a few ideas for reducing our carbon footprint. I’d love to hear yours too!
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Many modern barbecues are all singing, all dancing gizmos that guzzle a load of fossil fuels to generate gas or electricity. Gone are the days of a few chunks of charcoal sitting on a few bricks like I had as a child!
Combine your modern barbecue with a patio heater and one barbecue can raise your carbon footprint considerably. A patio heater can emit as much carbon dioxide in two hours as a car does in a day!
If you want to indulge in some greener al fresco dining this year, then choose a traditional charcoal barbecue from sustainably sourced fuel. Most of the charcoal sold in the UK is imported from tropical rainforests which we want to avoid.
Look for charcoal with the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) logo. Check out British charcoal, produced from renewable coppiced woodland. You can buy it from Bio Regional.
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Don’t choose ‘value packs’ or economy meat. Not only are you eating poor quality meat filled with synthetic flavourings and additives which is bad for your health, but the animals have endured a traumatic life with intensive farming and artificial feeding.
Visit your local butcher or farmers market and buy local, humanely reared meat. If you opt for supermarkets, then select free range and organic meat. Buy sustainably caught fish and enjoy local vegetables. Make sure you include plenty of vegetarian options at your barbecue – eating a vegetarian diet can slash your carbon footprint dramatically and you might just inspire someone with your culinary know how.
Use recycled aluminium foil and and grown up, washable plates, cutlery, napkins and glasses instead of plastic or paper disposable items. The washing up will only take a few minutes and you’ll keep a load of items out of the landfill
Finish your feast with some fair-trade wine and remember to recycle your empties for a memorable evening with the minimum of guilt!
What about you? What are your eco friendly barbecue tips?
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