Vegware’s Sustainability Report 2021

Read Vegware’s Sustainability Report 2021 – our detailed review of how we worked to our Environmental Objectives in 2021. We achieved a lot, including supporting 160 non-profits through our Community Fund, and helping Glasgow Science Centre compost its used Vegware during the COP26 Climate Conference.

Watch our 1-minute highlights video:

We’re proud of our stats for access to composting in the UK:

  • At the end of 2021, 100% of mainland UK was covered by courier post-back services, and regular commercial collections were available for Vegware clients in 46 of the UK’s largest towns and cities, covering 49% of the UK population. (Keen to compost? Tell us here.)
  • In 2021, Vegware’s Close the Loop Scotland collections took over 76 tonnes of used Vegware products for composting – the equivalent of 4.4 million of Vegware’s 12oz cups and lids.
  • During 2021, Vegware’s waste consultancy helped 55 clients set up new composting schemes, from large catered offices and universities to independent cafes.

In our 32-page report we discuss our ISO 14001 Environmental Objectives for the year – the ones we achieved, and the ones we are still working towards, and introduce our Sustainability Pillars.  

The report includes composting case studies. You can read about clients who have worked with our Environmental team to set up composting schemes for used Vegware packaging.

  • From the UK we include the University of Glasgow, The Welding Institute in Cambridge, Glasgow Science Centre and Belgrave Music Hall in Leeds.
  • And from the US, we describe supporting Nike who launched a Drive to 100% Food Waste Diversion program in the company’s Memphis Distribution Center, working alongside Food Services provider ISS Guckenheimer. 

Composting COP26 waste from Glasgow Science Centre

In November 2021, Glasgow hosted the UN’s climate change conference, COP26. Delegates from around the world came to Glasgow for the conference. One of the focal points was the ‘Green Zone’ in Glasgow Science Centre. Around 3,000 people a day attended events here, including delegates, staff and volunteers. Vegware’s Close the Loop service collected the used packaging and food scraps from the 900+ staff meals a day. That event waste has now been turned into compost for use on Scottish fields. 

The UK’s first compostables sorting line! 

In February, with co-investment from Vegware and Waste and Resources Action Programme (WRAP), Paper Round installed the UK’s first ever sorting line for compostables at their materials recycling facility near London. 

Vegware Community Fund supported 160 projects

2021 was another busy year for the Vegware Community Fund – providing monthly grants to 30 different non-profits, giving away 135 orders of Vegware products and supporting a total of 160 different projects. 

One of the highlights of the year was assisting The Lost Woods grow the Glasgow Children’s Woodland! School children aged 5 – 11 across Glasgow were given a sapling, planted in a Vegware cup. Each child nurtured their sapling before planting it on a 13-acre site in Cathkin Braes Country Park. You can check out the film they made here

Where we can improve 

At Vegware, we want to practice what we preach. One of our Environmental Objectives for 2021 was to achieve an 80% recycling rate in our Edinburgh offices. Having increased steadily from 69% in 2019, 72% in 2020, we fell slightly shy of our target with 77% in 2021. Although we just missed our target, our recycling rate has seen major improvements in the last few years.   

As we came out of the pandemic, one of our key targets was to reduce our electricity and gas usage. Whilst we achieved our electricity goal, we weren’t able to reduce our gas usage. As we move forward in 2022, we are still working towards our reduction targets. 

That’s more than enough intrigue. Go and read the full thing here. 

We hope you enjoy! 

The front cover of Vegware's first ever sustainability report.

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