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Here’s Why Paper and the Holiday Season Go Hand in Hand

Holiday Cards
Photo from How Life Unfolds.

From holiday cards and packaging to decor and wrapping paper, this season, more than ever, we rely on paper, packaging and other paper products.

Even in the digital age, the paper industry is booming. In fact, there are more jobs available in the paper industry in any one year than all of the new paper science and engineering graduates throughout the country combined.

So exactly how much paper do we use during the holiday season? Let’s start with holiday cards.

While the original idea for Christmas cards was conceived in 1843 in England, it wasn’t until 1875 that the idea came to America. Today, the US Postal Service predicts that nearly 2.5 billion pieces of first-class mail, including greeting cards, will be processed and delivered the week of December 16 alone.

Beyond the physical card, paper is also used to produce envelopes and packaging. With online shopping becoming the go-to for as much as 60% of people, an estimated 3 billion packages will be delivered between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day. That’s a lot of paper!

And don’t forget about the paper used to decorate homes and wrap presents, the paper products used for napkins and plates during holiday entertaining, the apparel boxes and gift bags that accompany gifts, the paper used to write wish lists and letters to Santa, and the paper used for thank you notes.

Before you go worrying about all the trees it takes to make paper, remember that wood is a responsibly sourced renewable resource–each year, forests in the US and Canada grow significantly more wood than is harvested. More so, in North America, paper is recycled more than any other commodity.

So, while you’re celebrating the season, remember just how essential paper is to your holiday!