6 Sustainable Sweet Ideas for Valentine’s Day

Show your sweetheart you love the world as much as them.

Here are 6 ideas to make the sweets-for-your-sweetie more sustainable and easier on the environment.

#1: Pour It On Thick With Maple Sugar
Satisfy your sweet tooth with delicious, nutritious maple syrup. Real maple syrup is more expensive than pancake syrup, but a little goes a long way and adds nutrient-packed taste. New England-produced maple syrup is available at local supermarkets, for a regionally-produced, sustainably grown, delicious sweetness.

Two upcoming NJ events are: Feb. 23 at the Reeve-Reed Arboretum in Summit and Mar. 15-16 at Lusscroft Farm in Sussex County.

#2: Make It the Thought That Counts, Not the Card
You can say it better than Hallmark. Make a card with magazine-cut-outs. Tramp out an I Love You in the snow. Hide a list of the top 10 reasons you love someone in a pocket. Bake their favorite cookies. Let them drive the remote. Do their most-hated chore. Call them just because. Create your own tradition that costs less, doesn’t produce landfill trash and shows how you feel.

#3: Dress Up (or Down) and Dine Local
Whether you pick white-linen upscale or family friendly, a close-to-home night out saves gas and supports local business.

#4: Say It with Flowers, But Greener Ones
It’s hard to think about, but commercially grown cut flowers that come from South America often are produced using pesticides and labor practices that put floral workers at high risk of chemical exposure and harm.

Whole Foods Market sells cut flowers that ensure better wages, environmental practices and working conditions.

#5: Make Their Heart Beat Faster
Spend time, rather than money, and get outside for a heart-healthy Valentine’s Day for a walk or hike. Visit the penguins at the zoo. Find a good spot to look at the skyline twinkle. Skate hand-in-hand at your local rink.

#6: Chocolate but Better
Bypass the generic big red heart-shaped box and spend a little more for an earth- and worker-friendly choice of organic, fair-trade or locally-made chocolate. Find them at Whole Foods Market and specialty grocers.

With a drop of creativity and an extra dollop of planning, you can show your sweethearts that you love the world we live in just as much as them.

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