Climate change protests this summer have really made the political world sit up and take notice, with governments across the globe announcing a ‘climate emergency’ and desperately looking for ways to halt the damage we are doing to the planet.
We strongly believe that businesses have an important role to play when it comes to climate change, and that means setting an example and giving our customers a chance to choose more environmentally friendly products. Long before climate change became such a hot topic for debate, the Office Coffee Companywas working to change for the better.
Last year we cut our carbon footprint by 17% and we've been awarded the Eden Project’s much-coveted Planet Mark for our efforts. The Planet Mark is an important accolade, as it proves we’re going above and beyond to positively impact society, the economy and the health of the environment.
What is The Planet Mark?
The Eden Project awards The Planet Mark to organisations which show they are making progress when it comes to sustainability. The sustainability certification ‘recognises outstanding achievements, encourages action and builds an empowered community of like-minded individuals’, and there is a rigorous testing process before a company can win the award.
This involves measuring a business’s carbon footprint and environmental impact year on year, to see how much they have reduced the effect they have on the planet. This covers everything from waste production to energy usage, air miles to water consumption, giving an accurate picture of the improvements they have made.
But the work doesn’t stop with achieving a Planet Mark, as companies are then set goals to help them cut back still further over the course of the next year. At the Office Coffee Company, we are incredibly proud of this achievement but we won’t rest on our laurels, and we’ve set some ambitious targets we’re determined to reach over the coming year.
How have we performed?
Overall, our carbon footprint fell by 17% in 2018 when compared to the year before. We have made our buildings more energy efficient, cutting energy consumption and wastage by 7.3%, and we now use 3.2% less water than we did in the previous year. By implementing even small changes and making our team more aware, we’ve managed to make a positive impact and reduce the harm that we do to the environment.
We’ve always been very careful when it comes to sustainability, as that was the main driving force behind the creation of the Office Coffee Company. The Cool Earth coffee beans we brew are grown organically on Rainforest Alliance and Fairtrade certified farms, and every coffee you purchase from us helps award-winning charity Cool Earth protect the endangered Amazon rainforest.
Shockingly, only one in every four hundred disposable coffee cups is recycled and the rest go to landfill. With our office coffee machines, we want to change the throwaway culture. By delivering the highest quality coffee straight to the office, we want people to ditch the chain stores and their disposable cups for ‘proper’ mugs and ‘proper’ great tasting coffee. We encourage recycling wherever possible, both within our own team and among our customers. Making sure everything is put to good use, you can even use your ground coffee beans as extra fertiliser for the office plants, as they put added nitrogen into the soil.
Where to next for the the Office Coffee Company?
While we’re celebrating the 2018 Planet Mark, the Office Coffee Company already has eyes on winning again next year. The Eden Project has set us a target of reducing our carbon footprint by a further 5% throughout 2019, and we’re making every effort possible not only to hit that goal but to exceed it, if possible.
Going green shouldn’t be a choice for businesses, it should be an obligation. Sustainability has always been at the heart of everything we do, and it continues to underpin our efforts as we move forward. While we’re proudly and publicly displaying our Planet mark, there’s plenty more going on behind the scenes as we aim to smash our next carbon reduction target.
We’re constantly finding new ways to improve the systems and processes we have in place, to reduce energy consumption and minimise wastage in all its forms. As a company which continues to go from strength to strength, balancing growth with environmentally-friendly policies isn’t always easy, but it’s something we firmly believe we have to do.
We’ve pledged to do our bit for the planet, and we can do it without compromising on the great tasting coffee we serve. With the help of our customers, we can lead by example. We only have one planet and protecting it will always be at the forefront of our minds.