The green vision of the Christmas markets in South Tyrol

South Tyrol's Christmas markets on the road to becoming a GreenEvent. The main factors that set apart the five Original South Tyrol Christmas Markets - whose quality products and local specialties from throughout South Tyrol contribute to a contemplative Christmas season each and everyyear - are authenticity and naturalness.

In 2013, the relationship with nature and sustainability of the Christmasmarkets along the five-star route are to be further strengthened. Work is currently going on in cooperation with the Ökoinstitut Südtirol to make Advent in South Tyrol more ecological and sustainable and to transform the South Tyrol Original Christmas Markets into a certified Green Event. The key factors involved in doing so are energy efficiency, eco-friendlyorganization and the use of regional products. First and foremost, the Christmas trees - a total of 1,000 in all - that adorn the Christmas market areas in 2013 will be sourced exclusively from South Tyrol, the forest stand of which has increased significantly in recent years. In addition to the natural decorations and ecological wood of the marketstands, which take the reality of South Tyrol's landscape into account froman architectural point of view, the Christmas markets will offer only artsand crafts - traditional and innovative styles alike - as of 2013. In addition, workshops will be featured during which long-standing crafts such asfelting or wreath tying may be learned in a hands-on way.

The Original South Tyrol Christmas Markets will also accompanied by traditional music,choirs and ensembles. Even when visitors are eating and snacking at the many stands selling gourmet and specialty items, the motto from 2013 forward will be in linewith green values: regional, seasonal, organic and fair trade.

This year,there will also be a variety of regional vegetarian dishes on offer i naddition to the classic South Tyrolean specialties. The certification of the "Original christmas markets of South Tyrol" as Going-Green Events requires a series of measures, of which the mostimportant are:

  • Using FSC-certified paper, climate-neutral printing of leaflets
  • Waste reduction and separation
  • Giving information on sustainable travel and providing shuttle busservices
  • Offering regional, hand-made products
  • Sustainable catering: seasonal and regional produce, vegetariandishes
  • Using energy efficiently
  • Training of stall-keepers and staff· Involvement of project partners and suppliers