PLASTIC AUDIT & UPDATE
Plastic - not quite Fantastic - but in some cases necessary, and a great trigger for change.
It’s no secret that unnecessary plastic has become public enemy number one, and quite rightly so. The statistics related to plastic pollution are as numerous as they are staggering. Here are three which help put the problem in perspective.
- 8.3 billion metric tons of plastic has been produced, 6.3 billion metric tons has become plastic waste. Of that, only nine percent has been recycled.
- There are approximately 51 trillion microscopic pieces of plastic polluting our planet, which is 500 times the number of stars in our galaxy.
- A plastic bottle can last for 450 years in the marine environment. This means that every piece of plastic that has ever been produced is still with us, in some form.
One thing that has now become clear to everyone, is that it is no longer acceptable for us, to collectively continue our plastic related behaviour from the 20th century, in the 21st.
Here at LARDO, we have been undergoing a self-imposed audit on our plastic use and waste in general, and in the interest of transparency we want to share with our customers what steps we’re taking, where we’re making progress, and where we need to improve.
Since we did our first plastic audit in October 2018:
Our use of cling film is down by 75%. Gone are the days of using this over our liquor bottles at the end of service (we now have rubber caps) and covering our service trays before refrigeration.
Fruit from the bar is locked up in air-tight plastic containers and now we only use it when there is no alternative to keeping certain foods fresh and healthy to not jeopardise the health of our customers.
We have spoken to our local EHO about the use of bee wax fabric instead of cling film where other solutions aren’t that great and they have given their approval. We are keen to have some made in large scale for us to trial this year.
It’s been over a year since a plastic straw has been cited on our premises, and we don’t use straws at all in the majority of our drinks.
100% of our paper and glass is recycled.
Our evening service uses cloth napkins, we have absolutely no single use containers in our kitchens (bar for milk and fresh cheeses) We are reviewing if we can use cloth throughout the day.
We’ve replaced our pens with pencils where possible and then use wooden ones that reduce the plastic use by 50% when pencils won’t cut it.
Our tea bags are now plastic free.
Our plastic audit in October last year made us review our single use habits in other areas too:
We’ve looked to reduce the paper use onsite and use digital entry and recording as much as possible.
We don’t do a huge trade in take-away coffee, but we’re still working on a solution to our take-away coffee cups. We offer a 20% discount on anyone who brings in their own reusable coffee cup and also the same incentive to those who do ask for a takeaway but take us up on our offer to sit.
We stopped printing colouring pages for kids and now use 100% reused paper (old menu’s) and we offer our budding Picassos a chalkboard too.
We have our own water filter to make our own soda-water in house.
Things we know we need to review and find solutions to are:
Supply chain waste (via our suppliers and sourcing produce from Italy and other parts of Europe)
Recycling - specifically food waste. We try and use what ever we have brought in (as any smart kitchen would as it is common sense economics) But through the Sustainable Restaurants Association we’re also in the process of a 6 week food waste audit, and are excited about the possibilities of composting what we don’t use and heading towards a zero waste kitchen! (stay tuned for more on this)
A greater split of our recycling (cardboard baler, glass crusher) As we are in a mix-use building a lot of this is shared and the final decisions are down to the management but we are in conversation with them currently about finding a better, more streamlined approach to our waste and the greater waste of the building.
We are currently awaiting an energy audit from the Carbon Trust who will be able to give us a report on where we stand and actionable points to move on for impact. We’ll share these with you when complete.
One thing that all of this has shown us, is that whilst we have always had sustainability in our core DNA, the plastic shock has led us much further than just ‘plastic’ and much deeper into revising our behaviours and adapting these with the learnings found by doing this audit and others on our sustainability. This behaviour change has moved us much further into this world - we understand our responsibility to us, the community, and to the world at large much better. It has been a trigger us to research, respond and reach out for help to understand more what we can do to make impactful change.
Team Lardo <3