Green Memorial Day 2016

Memorial Day signals the start of picnic season and time to bring out the grill here are some tips to make your holiday weekend a little greener.

Grilling –

Charcoal and wood give food that smoky flavor that so many people love. However, all of that smoke is harmful to the environment and possibly harming your health. But there is a healthy answer. Propane burns much cleaner and is a cheaper fuel than wood.

Still want that smoky flavor? Try liquid smoke flavorings. The recommended daily upper safety limit for these carcinogens is 47. Hickory smoke flavoring has only 0.8 per teaspoon, so we’d have to drink three bottles a day to bump up against the limit. And mesquite liquid smoke has only 1.1.

It turns out that most of the carcinogens in smoke are fat soluble, so when we make a water-based solution, like liquid smoke, we capture the smoke flavor compounds without capturing most of the smoke cancer compounds.

Dishes –

If baked beans and potato salad are on the menu, you’re going to need a plate and some eating utensils. But paper and Styrofoam plates along with plastic utensils can take up room in the landfill for decades. And, washing dishes takes all of the fun out of a picnic. The answer can be found at nearly every local grocery in the form of biodegradable plates, drink cups, and utensils. Yes, they will cost a few cents more, but the environmental advantage is that they only take between three and six months to decompose.