How to turn a coffee shop green
- By Robyn Kimber -
- Sep 12, 2012
Today's guest blog looks at how the nations coffee shops can become more sustainable...
At Cafédirect we carried out a study into the carbon footprint of our coffee, tea and cocoa. Many may think the main contributors would be in the shipping or even the growing, but what we found was that the vast majority was in the consumption phase (the boiling of the kettle!). So we set about looking for ways to influence this part of our supply chain, over which we have no control.
Firstly we looked at the customers taking our products home. We started by encouraging them to boil responsibly, only boiling the amount of water needed for their hot drinks and partnered with Ecotricity to give them a deal to switch to green electricity (making the water they do boil low carbon).
We then started looking at our foodservice customers, who serve our drinks in cafés, restaurants and cafeterias. This was a harder area to influence as there are many different impacts a food venue might have. We therefore decided to create an EcoToolkit that gives tips and advice on a range of topics.
The toolkit is unique because not only is it tailor made for the foodservice industry, but it also tailors the advice depending on the user. It has four sections covering energy, water, waste and procurement, suggesting tips, many of which also help save the venue money. The recommendations range from tracking energy consumption to ensuring the espresso machine runs efficiently.
Although coffees shops are usually relatively small, there are around 14 thousand of them in the UK, so together they have a significant footprint. We hope that the EcoToolkit will help raise awareness on what simple steps can be taken to reduce the impacts of hot drinks.