Josh and his daughter outside the shop.

Vegan sweet shop joins the eco-friendly fight

Date

A live document that's always open to feedback.

71% of the world’s pollution comes from just 100 companies. As a consumer, the battle to save the planet from our own destruction seems impossible. Especially when you can only control so little.

As a small independent business owner, I agree that the blame should not be passed onto the consumer. Their choice between “bad for the environment” and “slightly better, but will still kill the planet” is not what’s going to end this.

The solution is big businesses and producers taking responsibility and offering eco-friendly products only. Make saving the planet the default choice – the only choice.

Alleway’s does not have control over the entire supply chain, but there are actions we take to do our part. This document details those actions and is updated frequently. We welcome any feedback and suggestions on how we can do even more for the planet and make it easier for our customers.

Reducing waste with TooGoodToGo

Logo of TooGoodToGo

Confections aren’t the most perishable in the food world – you can expect up to 12 months on the best before. However, on the odd occasion where we have a surplus, we don’t let the products go to waste. By partnering with TooGoodToGo, we’re able to eliminate our stock waste by offering products past the best before at a discount.

There are plenty of local food establishments on the platform too. If you want a great meal for a fantastic price whilst saving waste going to landfills, you should jump on.

Careful stock management

One of the reasons we don’t sell many Magic Bags on TooGoodToGo is due to our stock management. With new product lines, we order a small amount first to test the waters before placing a larger order. Some suppliers offer lower minimum orders which allows us to order quickly when we run out.

We’re not in favour of multiple deliveries and increased carbon emissions generated by this. Therefore, some of our popular products are ordered in bulk depending on space (we’re really small) and also origin.

For our sandwiches (which are more perishable) we adopt a “better to sell out than throw out” policy. Soon, we’re introducing a pre-order method to ensure stock levels meet your needs.

Favouring eco-focused suppliers

When sourcing new products, we favour certified B-corps and those with other eco-friendly credentials. This depends on their origin, but having biodegradable packaging is a good start.

Better packaging in-store and out

When we ship our pick ‘n’ mix, we use Natureflex compostable bags to keep them fresh and all together. These bags are home compostable and we actively encourage customers to do so where possible.

Annoyingly, they’re not recyclable like paper and we’re trying to find a better solution. One option is hosting a regular collection at The Warehouse. In the meantime, Natureflex is the best option for us and the consumer.

We also use paper bags for packaging our pick ‘n’ mix when bought in store, as well as offering paper carrier bags when needed. We’re super happy that most customers bring their own bags and we encourage customers to bring their own containers. It’s not always possible, so we’re excited to offer a recyclable alternative for those unplanned moments.

Shipping boxes and protection

As a retailer, we end up receiving a lot of boxes and wrapping. Instead of throwing these away, we use them to send out orders. This means that customers may receive bubble wrapping or plastic protection in their order. Whilst the usage of these products do not align with our eco-friendly approach, the reusability of them is better than sending them to landfill.

When we have no packaging to reuse, we use Geami WrapPak – a system which converts environmentally friendly paper into packaging that prevents damage. Either way, products are being protected in shipping with the most eco-friendly option given to us.

Using DEW refills to clean

Readymix Blue Refill 2.5L (For Sanitising Products)

Not only does DEW offer the best vegan-friendly cleaning and sanitising solution for our shop, their refill options help reduce our carbon footprint. Delivered in 5L 100% recovered plastic jerry cans, we only need to order once in a blue moon whilst keeping the shop super-clean.

“On average for every 1 litre of Dew refill, used you save 1Kg of carbon. Calculations based on data from the carbon trust & the energy consumption from our Dew machines”

Choosing public transport

We have a car. We could join the annoying traffic jams every day (why is there always an accident?) and burn more petrol by not moving, but we choose not to. We catch the train 90% of the time and drive in once a week when we have to transport a few goods around.

What next?

These are the actions we take now to save the planet. They are easily accessible to us and decisions we can take 100% ownership of.

Next steps include putting external pressures on our suppliers to do better. Switching suppliers is always an option, but can come with increased costs. This is an open discussion we’ll always have with our customers and let them take the lead on that.

Being open and transparent about our choices as a business is the first step to tackling the 100 companies who are causing 71% of the pollution.

Now, we open the conversation to you.

Where could we do better?