As any family camper knows, living under canvas with kids in tow can entail huge amounts of packaging and plastics. Even the most organised of us will create a small amount of waste when prepping to feed and wash away from home. It’s ironic that these excursions, where we set out to be close to nature can be the most challenging in terms of maintaining a sustainable lifestyle. Fortunately, the likes of Tess from the Sustainable Camping Company are here to lend a helping hand. Tess has always had a passion for camping, and having found a gap in the market for sustainable gear specific to camping she decided to take matters into her own hands setting up The Sustainable Camping Company last year.
‘Our ethos is simple – we aim to inspire camping and adventuring in a more sustainable way. We are passionate about camping, but also love our planet. For us, it’s all about walking within nature while treading as gently as possible. Our aim to make sustainable camping easier by providing a selection of beautiful, hand-picked products which are both practical and stylish – and don’t cost the earth.’ Tess
Who better to inspire us all in making our next camping trip a more environmentally friendly one? I asked Tess to share 5 of her top tips for making this year’s camping trips more sustainable. So now we can enjoy our stunning countryside and surroundings and look after it at the same time!
Invest in reusable kit
As tempting as it may be to use plastic cups, paper plates or even cheap reusable plastic kitchenware these short lived items are all incredible wasteful. Although more expensive in the short term, investing in durable items such as stainless steel cups can save you money in the long term and are so much better for the environment.
Tess recommends the Elephant Box Pint Cup at £10 ‘I use this cup for everything – from hot lemon in the mornings to camomile at bedtime and maybe a cheeky beer in between!’
Use a shampoo bar
Using shampoo or conditioner as a bar not only reduces the amount of plastic you need to take away with you, but is also much better for water systems. Soap bars are often completely biodegradable and free from by products meaning there is no waste.
Tess recommends Friendly Soap Shampoo Bar – Lavender and Geranium.
Invest in a good quality tent that will really last
The range and choice when looking to invest in a tent can be overwhelming. If you’re wanting to buy something that is sustainable and built to last canvas is your best bet. Plastic-free, cotton canvas bell tents are breathable and strong and consequently last longer than tents made from conventional materials.
Tess says ‘ We have had the same tent from BCT Outdoors for 15 years. It’s important to care for your tent if you want it to last the distance. My tips for after care are to never pack wet, always clean the tent floor and store in a dry place off the ground (to avoid the mice!).’
Prepare meals to take with you
On site shopping and food prep involves unnecessary packaging and plastics. The more organised you can be before setting off on your trip the better. Obviously the longer you’re away the harder this can be, but even if you plan for the first 2 days of your trip this will still make a positive impact.
Tess recommends the Elephant Box Leakproof Food Canister Trio. ‘We have found this set of 3 canisters so useful when camping. Great for storing any kind of food, anything you need to keep dry and please that they are stackable.’
Seek out versatile kit
Investing in kit that serves more than one purpose saves you money and space. Seek out items such as a recycled plastic bucket that can serve as a tool for carrying, washing, bathing and carrying wetsuits.
Tess recommends the Camping Trayble. ‘One of the most useful items at camp is a simple bucket, but now you can make that bucket even more useful with our bucket tray table top. This transforms you bucket into a useful and beautiful table, giving you somewhere to keep items and keeping your tet tidy and looking gorgeous.’
Thanks to Tess for offering her tips and advice. If you’d like to read more about Tess and her sustainable camping products please visit the Sustainable Camping Company website here.