Category Archives: environment

vegware community fund recipient just cycle

Community Fund Focus: Just Cycle

This month’s Community Fund Focus is on Just Cycle – a Tweedbank-based charity which aims to  bring communities together and reduce landfill by recycling and upcycling old and broken bicycles.

Founded in 2014, the charity now has four directors. Fundraiser Alison Cameron tells us more about what the charity does:

“Our mission is to reduce inequalities, and encourage strong intergenerational relationships by involving all sectors of the community in our work. This includes recycling and re-using the bikes, and encouraging cycling among all sectors, including socially disadvantaged or isolated people.”

just cycle tweedbank vegware community fund

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vegware compostable recycling packaging debate

Vegware responds: Parliament debate on banning non-compostable packaging

A recent petition was circulated which called the UK government to ban all non-recyclable and non-compostable packaging in the UK. Garnering over 75,000 signatures, it was selected for debate on 23rd January – if you missed it, you can catch up here or read the response.

Vegware welcomes debate and we were delighted to see the issue of recycling taking such a major platform. We would however like to see more leadership from government to create a roadmap to maximum recycling. We have no doubt manufacturers would respond to this with the innovation and flair that exists in the industry.

Our focus is foodservice where compostable packaging is the right solution. Other types of packaging need to be treated differently and we must recognise this as we devise the best way forward for each waste category.

The debate raised many valid and relevant points around the environmental contribution of effective packaging, for example in preventing food waste in the supply chain. There were also some familiar objections to compostable packaging raised which we would like to comment on.

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Vegware eco compostable packaging university of cambridge

New film! University of Cambridge go compostable with Vegware

Two years ago, the University of Cambridge decided to make their catering more sustainable. Now, every month, they save 1.5 tonnes of carbon and recycle all of their food waste and packaging.

How? By switching to Vegware’s compostable packaging, creating clear bin signage, training catering staff and engaging students.

Find out more in our latest film!

Let us know what you think @vegware.

Community Fund Focus: Scottish Waterways Trust

The Vegware Community Fund supports sustainability in its broadest sense, offering regular funding or product donations to charities and not-for-profit organisations from Ayrshire to the Amazon. This month’s Community Fund focus is on one of our regular recipients, the Scottish Waterways Trust.

The Scottish Waterways Trust is an independent charity which undertakes innovative canal-based projects for the benefit of local communities, promoting health, wellbeing and conservation of Scotland’s canals. The Trust was established in 2001, and in that time has helped over 136,151 people, investing more than £10 million into hundreds of projects.

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Coffee cup recycling – it’s time for a change

Have you seen the news? Coffee cup recycling is making the headlines again. Last night on BBC1, Hugh’s War on Waste revealed that almost all of the 7 million coffee cups we use every day in the UK go to landfill or incineration, despite many of them claiming to be recyclable.

“The truth is,” says Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, ”they are barely recyclable at all – in the everyday, commonly understood sense of the word. They cannot be recycled through any of the normal public waste collection services – who are consistently diverting them to be incinerated or sent to landfill.”

We believe it’s time for a change.

With 10,000 cups disposed of every two minutes, consumers are demanding action. Here’s our compostable solution:

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river cottage vegware compostable recycling festival

New film! River Cottage Fair goes compostable with Vegware

River Cottage’s Spring Food Fair achieved an impressive 72% recycling rate by serving all food on Vegware compostable packaging; their best ever result. Our new film shows you how we did it.

Aiming to beat the UK event average of 15%, River Cottage trialled Vegware’s compostable packaging and recycling support. After the three-day event, 680kg of used takeaway packaging was composted with food waste at Viridor’s nearby composting facility. In less than 12 weeks this soil improver will be available to River Cottage’s gardens and local farmers.

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Vegware Gardening Scotland award plants horticulture Penicuik flowers

Vegware’s Carolyn wins silver medal at Gardening Scotland 2016

There are plenty of hidden talents in the Vegware team – and one of them just won an award! When she’s not crunching numbers in our Accounts team, Carolyn King has been honing her gardening skills. This weekend saw her and the Penicuik Horticultural Society win the silver award at the Gardening Scotland Festival for their sustainably minded masterpiece, complete with Vegware cups.

The piece was inspired by Major Tim Peake’s tour of duty to the International Space Station, and the beautiful images of Earth he shared from space. Using cups donated by our Community Fund,  recycled milk cartons, water bottles and discarded objects, the piece focuses on sustainable living and caring for the Earth’s ecosystem.

Well done Carolyn!

We’re hiring! Recycling Advisor job in Edinburgh

Seeking a bin enthusiast to join Vegware’s Environmental Team! This team provides our zero waste support services, supporting our clients to recycle their used Vegware together with food waste. That means building an excellent understanding of the waste and resources sector, maintaining our Food Waste Network database, supporting our sales team, and visiting clients and recyclers all over the UK to offer support.

In addition, this role involves managing Vegware’s internal environmental performance and training, and supporting our UK and global team with environmental information.

You’ll need great people skills, an eye for detail, and an inventive attitude to problem solving. It also helps if you are equally cheerful with complex spreadsheets or getting up close and personal with bins.

If that sounds like you, get in touch! Read the full job description and apply here.  Watch this film to see one of the Environmental Team’s recent success stories…

Bagasse plate tableware bowl vegware compostable eco packaging

Vegware is making waves in Barbados

Sun, sea – and Vegware! Campaigners in Barbados have been calling for ways to reduce polystyrene on this Caribbean island. Around seven 40-foot containers of polystyrene products go to their landfills every week, putting a huge strain on the environment and the limited available landfill space.

Vegware’s bagasse takeaway boxes and tableware are made of recycled sugarcane, which can be composted in home or industrial composting. Once it’s broken down, the resulting compost helps plants to grow. Bagasse also has 99% less carbon than polystyrene – so it’s eco friendly from start to finish.

Bico Ltd, the leading manufacturer of ice-cream and frozen desserts in Barbados, have been spreading the word about using Vegware. Edwin Thirwell, Executive Chariman explains:

“We know about the health and environmental risks posed by polystyrene packaging which is widely used in Barbados on a daily basis, and we must do what we can to reduce these risks and protect consumers. We have found a solution in Vegware, and we are urging the public to pay attention to the effect of their choices on our natural environment and their personal health.”

Read more about Vegware’s compostable solution in Barbados in the Barbados Advocate, Loop News Barbados and Barbados Today.