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Pukka becomes carbon neutral

2015. What a year for our home town of Bristol – winning the European Green Capital award. It means recognition of the many communities of our city to committing to a low carbon future with a high quality of life everyone. We’re really proud to be a member of the Green Capital partnership here at Pukka and to show our intent we’re celebrating officially becoming a carbon neutral company. It means we can point to the latest United Nations Environment Programme report which declares that global carbon neutrality needs to be reached by the second half of this century to avoid severe impacts to people, plants and planet and feel OK about asking others to act too. If you read it you’ll see just how urgent it is for all of us.

So what does carbon neutrality mean?

It means measuring the carbon footprint of a company or product and taking action to reduce this to zero. How? Through a combination of energy conservation, switching to renewable energy and increasing the amount of carbon stored in forests and soils. At Pukka, we have measured and reduced our impacts from gas, refrigeration, electricity, water, waste, travel, transport of goods and paper that are within our financial control. The emissions from these that we haven’t been able to reduce yet, have been offset by investing in a Gold Standard cookstove project, which, as well as reducing greenhouse gas emissions from forest degradation, also improves the wellbeing of rural communities.

A climate-friendly business

Our commitment to being organic, represents a commitment to our climate. Organic farming stores more carbon in the soil than non-organic farming and the Soil Association estimates that the widespread adoption of organic farming in the UK would offset at least 23% of UK agriculture’s greenhouse gas emissions (see Emma Reinhold’s article for more info on the benefits of organic). We also buy energy efficient equipment, reuse and recycle, use sea freight, consolidated deliveries and use suppliers who use renewable energy. We encourage everyone to get involved e.g. everyone at Pukka receives training on climate change to help us achieve our carbon neutral target. Our approach to tackling climate change also won us the Innovations Award in the West of England Carbon Challenge.

A carbon neutral future

We’ll be working hard to measure and reduce our carbon footprint at every stage of our product lifecycle, whilst seeking opportunities to gain carbon financing for our growers to support their livelihoods. One day we hope that we might achieve carbon neutrality that includes the growing, processing and packaging of our herbs and their retail, use and disposal, in a way that has improved the health and wellbeing of everyone with whom we have come into contact. This includes our suppliers, customers and even you…

Three ways you can help us:

1. When you make our tea - remember to not overfill your kettle (it will also save you money)
2. Compost those used tea bags (and use the compost to grow some organic herbs or plants)
3. Reuse our cartons (they make great sandwich boxes)

Carbon neutrality is a massive undertaking, but hugely important for people, plants and planet. We’ve made some progress and we want to make more – with your help we really can make a positive change for all of us.

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