Is Wrapping Paper Recyclable?

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Festive gifts

For many years, it's a question that would probably never have been asked. But growing awareness of our impact on the environment has made us wonder about everything we use, from tea bags to toothbrushes, as it turns out that many things aren't as eco-friendly as we once thought.

Did you know: Not all wrapping paper is recyclable?

You might be surprised, you might not even believe it, but unfortunately it is true. The horrifying result of this is that each year, we throw away enough wrapping paper to wrap around the earth more than eight times.

Continue reading to learn why and what you can do about it.

What wrapping paper is recyclable?

To answer this question, the first thing to understand is why not all wrapping paper can be recycled.

As manufacturers try to compete for the attention of us, the consumer, the design they produce have become more sophisticated and complex over time. This often means they are embellished with foil patterns to create shiny elements, or glitter to make it sparkle under the Christmas Tree lights.

Other wrapping papers commonly found in high-street shops is laminated with plastic to provide extra strength and a glossy finish, not to mention the plastic packaging they use when displaying it.

How to know if your wrapping paper is recyclable:

  1. If you're the one buying the paper, make sure you buy recyclable wrapping paper from a retailer who specialises in plastic-free products
  2. If you have received a gift, check either the reverse side of the paper or on the corners to see if it has been labelled by the manufacturer as recyclable
  3. Try scrunching up the paper into a ball - If it holds its shape then it's probably recyclable (plastic lamination will make it more rigid)

Where to Buy Recyclable Wrapping Paper

As the demand for eco-friendly products increases, more high-street retailers are opting to stock recyclable alternatives to their usual popular designs, but even these aren't guilt-free purchases as they are almost always wrapped in a plastic wrapper to keep them safe on the journey home.

The best sources are online retailers who specialise in plastic-free products. At Paper Crate, recyclable wrapping paper is one of our specialities and we make sure that the entire lifecycle of the product is as eco-friendly as possible, from selecting UK manufactured paper from recycled materials, to ensuring the inks are not tested on animals and delivering orders in paper-free packaging.

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