It's inevitable that you'll need to ship a gift to a loved one, and now is the time to get on it to make sure your items arrive in time for the holidays. Don't forget that using green packaging is not only eco-friendly, but can also save you money!
Earth911.org has some useful and simple tips on how to green your shipping:
• Boxes: Cardboard is the most common shipping container – so it's a good thing that it's non-toxic and biodegradable, just make sure to use boxes that are made with recycled content. Even better, save boxes that you've received to reuse, and when you're done with the boxes take them to most any shipping company who will gladly reuse or recycle them.
• Packaging Materials: Instead of using the terrible polystyrene peanuts try using something you already have around the house: old newspapers or magazines, plastic bags, towels or shredded paper. Popcorn also makes a good replacement for standard foam peanuts.
• Greeting Cards: There's so many ways to get in touch these days that sending cards through snail mail may no longer be necessary. While this may not be appropriate for everyone, the younger or more tech savvy set might find an eCard more fun (we love someecards.com by the way). Instead of sending that family photo send a link to your Flickr album or Facebook photos so they can see what you've been up to the whole year. If you do send snail mail use recycled paper, handmade cards or even plantable ones.
Finally, if you must buy new packaging, get CareMail products – the cardboard boxes are made out of 100-percent recycled content, the envelopes are cushioned with recycled newspapers and the packing peanuts are biodegradable. Available at The Green Postal Store and at Amazon.