Christmas is typically a time where most (ok, all) of us tend to overindulge in the food and drink department, stuffing ourselves like trussed up turkeys and passing out not long after in a somewhat painful food coma.
But given sustainability has been one of the hottest topics of 2019, it seems only fitting to consider creating a sustainable Christmas table for the upcoming festive season. We’re talking farm-fresh local produce, natural organic wines, and focusing on quality over quantity.
Sure, it’s tempting to head to the supermarket and fill your trolley to the brim with discounted meats and fish and such, but if you’re thinking sustainably then you’ll want to take a trip to the local butcher and grocer instead. Not only will you be directly supporting Australian farmers by shopping locally, but you’ll also save yourself from drowning under a mountain of plastic packaging.
So here's how to create a sustainable Christmas table.
These days it’s not hard to track down the good stuff, what with local Melbourne businesses like Leadoux Turkeys and Arthur's Poultry offering up affordable Christmas specials on fancy free-range, organic, gluten-free, nitrate-free, biodynamic turkeys and hams that make the perfect hero dish for a sustainable Christmas lunch or dinner.
If seafood is more your thing, Queen Victoria Market is hard to go past.
Head in and visit one of the five on-site fishmongers for the freshes fish with the best advice on how to cook it on the big day.
Fruit And Vegetables
Remember that while you’re shopping for the star of the show, you don’t need to buy massive quantities to fill the whole table. That’s where the delicious plant-based sides can come into play.
When it comes to fruit and veg, supporting local farmers is the way to go for a sustainable table, and organic reigns supreme. Head along to one of Melbourne’s many farmers markets to stock up on vibrant produce to fill your plate with, remembering your reusable bags of course.
Need milk for your infamous pavlova? Cheese for your cheeseboard? Opt for additive-free, ethical and organic dairy, like that produced by Victorian dairy Schulz, which is available from heaps of convenient locations around the state.
With your food sorted it’s time to focus on a sustainable drinks selection. Specialty bottle shops like Blackhearts & Sparrows, Cult Of The Vine, or wine-to-your-door service Loose Ends offer a wide range of award-winning natural and organic wines from sustainable growers who work hard to protect the environment, and the friendly peeps behind the counter will be more than happy to point you in the right direction.
It’s not just wine that comes in sustainable form, these days you can even find sustainable beers, such as Footscray's Hop Nation.
The brewery is careful in their selection of ingredients for their brews, choosing to source from producers that are transparent about their practices and those that are doing their best to mitigate pests naturally and manage their irrigation programs in sustainable and innovative ways.
Want to check out the best Christmas lights around Melbourne this year? Here's our guide.
Image credit: Tourism WA