Ross & Ross Gifts Environmental Policy 2020
Reviewed 30th November 2019 | Next review 30th May 2020
We aim to source our products and packaging from suppliers that share the same values as us.
We use small, often family run, suppliers which have similar values to us.
We have very minimal food waste. All of our ingredients such as spices are bought in exact quantities, so nothing is wasted. Products like our rapeseed oil, use the left over husks to make animal feed and the oil can be used as bio fuel after it has been used. The returned used oil from restaurants even heats the production unit.
We now have a compost bin where we fill with any veg scraps, shredded paper, newspaper, tea bags, coffee grounds, ash, charcoal, grass trimmings and anything else we can pop in there. This is then used to grow herbs and vegetables.
We source our ingredients from as close to us in the Cotswolds as possible. If we have all this amazing produce on our doorstep then it makes perfect sense to use it. Some products such as our sea salts come from Anglesey, North Wales (the Cotswolds are blessed with lots of amazing produce but sadly not the sea!). Either way it will be local or British wherever possible.
When we do our outdoor cooking and BBQ we choose our fuel with the environment in mind (plus it makes our food taste better!). We use Oxford Charcoal based close to us. 80% of the wood is from Forestry Commission approved woodland and is all certified by Grown in Britain. It is pure additive free charcoal. High fixed carbon, no nasty added chemicals, no tainting or paraffin odour. No petrol smells or odd flavours.
We also use Cocoshell briquettes that are 100% natural, with no added sulphur or other chemicals.
And the wood (chunks, chips and dusts) we use for smoking, comes from sustainable 100% natural sources.
We have started to add recycling symbols to our products to encourage the end user to recycle. To be honest this is a really tricky subject. Some local councils say one thing and others say another. Either way we will do our best to use recyclable materials and hope the government and local councils set some easier guidelines to help everyone understand what can and cannot be recycled. But in short, the main material we use are glass and cardboard which can all be fully recycled.
This year we took part in the Woodland Trust ‘The Big Climate Fightback’ and planted 11 trees around our HQ. We planted a mixture of Poplars to attract birds to rest and nest plus apple, pear, quince, cherry, plum and fig trees. The fig tree may be a tad optimistic in this climate but it all counts I guess. #EveryTreeCounts
Our products consist of gift boxes, hampers and individual grocery products and where possible we have used recyclable products.
Homemade Curing kits
These are made from fully recyclable cardboard for the boxes, lids and sleeves. Currently we use plastic stand up pouches to hold the curing salts. These can be washed out and reused. We are trying to find new pouches that are not plastic and fully compostable. We are still in the testing stage as the salts like to eat through the compostable pouches. We will continue to look at new options as they come to market.
The products that we use in our hampers are all made from glass and fully recyclable. The hamper boxes are all strong cardboard and fully recyclable. Along with the gift tags. The hampers are filled with recycled shredded paper to pack out the hamper.
Some of the labels on the jars and bottles have a plastic coating on them to stop them warping and peeling off. We are looking for other options from our suppliers. There is also a plastic coating on the inside of the lid of the jars and bottles. This is essential to keep the product food safe.
These are sent out in strong cardboard boxes. We used to use stock boxes and pack then out with bubbles and void fill. We have now had bespoke boxes made that fit the hamper boxes exactly to eliminate and unnecessary extra packaging.
Any spare boxes we receive at the warehouse are now shredded into a cross hatch and used to wrap packages sent to customers.
We make products such as rubs, chutney and oils. These are made in glass jars and bottles and are recyclable. As mentioned above, some of the labels on the jars and bottles have a plastic coating on them to stop them warping and peeling off. We are looking for other options from our suppliers. There is also a plastic coating on the inside of the lid of the jars and bottles. This is essential to keep the product food safe.
Case and Postal boxes
We send all of our products out in cardboard boxes and can all be recycled. We don’t use the cheaper option of a shallow cardboard tray with plastic wrapped over it.
For our packaging we use the following companies:
Rajapack. Environmental Policy here https://www.rajapack.co.uk/environmental/environmental-policy_cms_000049.html
Marshall Langston Environmental Statement: “Our products are paper based, which is an environmentally friendly packaging material as it comes from renewable resources.
Our paper based packaging consists of 80% recycled paper and 20% wood which is from sustainable forests. All of our boxes are 100% recyclable and biodegradable and we take great care to minimise waste during the design and manufacturing processes. We use flexographic print as it is the most environmentally friendly printing process, because it uses water based inks.
Our boxes conform to all current environmental legislation including the Government’s Packaging (Essential Requirements) Regulations. We continuously strive to improve our green credentials and promote sustainable manufacturing.
Forestry Stewardship Council (FSC) – Our paper and cardboard suppliers are registered with the Forestry Stewardship Council (FSC) We are therefore assured that our paper products conform to the FSC commitments to sustainable and responsible forestry management. As our customer, you can be satisfied that all of your packaging is sourced responsibly and ethically.”
To find out more, please visit www.fsc-uk.org
The Team on our grocery and gift side are now all remote. We made this change to eliminate any unnecessary journeys to the office and cut down on travel time on the road. Even our meetings are cut down by the use of phone and video based conferencing.
So we minimise the use of paper in the office. We try to buy recycled and recyclable paper products.
We reuse and recycle all paper where possible and won’t print things unless completely necessary.
We have also asked all suppliers to send e-invoices rather than paper ones.
Transport & Distribution
We have made some changes with our trade customers. We have started to use more distributors so that the orders we send are more compact with fewer journeys.
We are now working with larger multiple companies who will take orders in larger quantities on pallets, again cutting down on smaller deliveries.
All of the clear bags we use at retail shows are Biodegradable Carrier Bags. This range of eco-friendly carrier bags can be disposed of with industrial compost where they will break down.
We still have lots of improvements to make but are certainly on the right path and will continue to search for better ways to run our business.
If you have any suggestions how we can improve our products and systems then we would love to hear from you. If you make compostable pouches then we would love to hear how you can help us improve our compostability and recycling. Please contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org