Recently as a part of the Autumn Budget 2017, Chancellor Phillip Hammond made a pledge towards looking into reducing single-use plastics waste. We were thrilled to hear this, as we have already been actively working towards this as a result of demand from our ecologically conscious members.
A number of our members have been particularly concerned about the use of plastic bottles, to the extent that they have told us they do not want to have them anymore.
We looked into this and, as a result, have sourced a number of alternatives including a canned water product, which is re-sealable. From a recycling point of view cans can be back in circulation within six weeks, whereas only a third of plastic bottles are recycled.
Every day in the UK, nearly 40 million plastic bottles are used, and each year some eight million tonnes of plastic waste is dumped into the sea. It has been widely reported that seaborne plastic waste will outweigh all the fish in the world’s oceans by 2050 if action is not taken to halt the flow of waste plastic.
The problem of single-use plastics is something that should be of concern to everyone and it is something that everyone can help resolve. We firmly believe that we all have a duty to play our part in protecting our planet.
As a company, we are committed to ensuring we meet all our members’ needs as best we can. When our members started telling us they were becoming increasingly concerned, particularly with plastic water bottles, we were determined to find a cost-effective, alternative solution. We have sourced this canned water product and have listed it with a national wholesaler so that we can start getting it out into the marketplace.
We have done similar work in the past, sourcing products without palm oil following concerns that palm oil plantations in Asia were destroying crucial rain-forest habitats, so we are very much at the forefront in this industry of being environmentally aware.
“We are fully committed to continuing to help source sustainable products for our members.”
One of our members the Zoological Society of East Anglia (ZSEA), who are proudly involved in a number of animal conservation projects have become increasingly concerned about the impact of plastic waste on wildlife and the environment. Martin Dupee, ZSEA’s Director of Operations had this to say:
"Through operating Banham Zoo and Africa Alive!, as we do, our whole ethos is built not only upon the conservation and welfare of endangered species but also the environment and the world we live in.
Single-use plastic has become a major issue for as long as industry which uses plastic fails to recycle anywhere near the volume being produced.This, coupled with the indiscriminate littering of plastic, means that waste plastic is heading towards pandemic proportions, which cannot be acceptable.
We made the decision to remove all single-use plastic from our proposition, starting with drinks, disposable cups and straws.
The Regency Purchasing Group has been instrumental in assisting us with this process, in seeking alternatives with a number of suppliers and products, which will result in us making major changes within the coming weeks."