Have you ever found a stray plastic egg laying around by the playground and wondered why kids run around in a field, searching for eggs that supposedly came from the Easter Bunny?
My parents never bought into the tradition of the Easter egg scavenger hunt, which means I never searched for plastic eggs filled with bad candy or silly little toys in a field. But the tradition raises a few interesting questions.
Where did the Easter Bunny come from? The Easter Bunny first appeared in America back in the 1700s in Pennsylvania when German immigrants settled and transported their tradition of an egg-laying hare called “Osterhase” or “Oschter Haws,” according to History.com. Their children believed that this hare would lay colorful eggs. In anticipation of these eggs, the children made nests. Since then, the German tradition has evolved into what we know today: people dressed in Easter Bunny outfits and kids running around with decorated baskets trying to collect plastic eggs.
While the tradition is fun in spirit, unfortunately, the plastic eggs used in all of these hunts are not always recyclable, according to greenmatters.com. Since they are made out of a thin plastic, certain areas do not consider it recyclable, and the eggs must instead be thrown in the garbage. In addition, production of these little eggs is not even sustainable in the first place. The factories that produce them, located in China, create “a massive carbon footprint” during the fabrication and transportation processes, according to Summit Daily. Not to mention, most of the eggs contain harmful chemicals such as BPA and lead paint, which are bad for the environment and our water resources.
Instead of throwing these plastic eggs into the garbage, we can reuse them in different ways to try and combat the problem. Of course, this should only apply if one has already purchased them(if you haven’t bought them yet, don’t). A good failsafe idea is to keep and reuse them for years to come or donate them to consignment shops. They can also be used in craft projects, such as homemade string lights, ornaments and maracas.
While it’s fun to have all these colorful eggs along with the many other decorations that come around each Easter, there are consequences for consuming so many new products every year. Even if you don’t celebrate Easter, many of the products are just meant to be spring items. So it seems that even Easter is not safe from being part of the world’s environmental insensitivity. It seems to be a common theme for retailers to produce excessive amounts of products that nobody needs when it comes to holidays.
So, maybe the Easter Bunny should be canceled. His business seems to promote waste.