Americans are ordering more vinyl Christmas trees this year than ever before,
according to the Arlington, VA- based Vinyl Institute.
At the same time, they are helping the environment, as the trees are made from
millions of pounds of recycled vinyl, said industry spokesman Allen Blakey.
"Early reports from retailers and Christmas and garden stores suggest
that sales this year will break all records," Blakey said.
One reason, he noted, is that the trees are more lifelike than ever. But other
reasons could be more important. "They add an extra measure of safety in
the home, because vinyl has fire retardant properties. They are generally favored
over live trees for use in offices and other commercial buildings because of
fire hazard concerns."
"Consumers love vinyl trees for many reasons, whether they have animals,
allergies, or just don't want to pick up the pine needles, said Wally Kooiman
of the popular Peppermint Forest Christmas Shop in Charlotte, NC. "Once
people have a vinyl Christmas tree, they don't go back."
Interior designer Heather Quinn of HQ Designs in Charlotte said, "I would
not use or recommend anything but a vinyl tree in my holiday design. They are
safe, cost-effective, maintenance free, and look fabulous from any angle."
Vinyl trees are approved by the National Fire Protection Association, which
reports that hundreds of fires are started each year when natural Christmas
trees accidentally ignite, causing deaths, injuries and millions of dollars
in property damage.
It is estimated that 70 percent of all trees purchased this year will be made
of fire-retardant and recycled vinyl or other plastic material, the Institute