We’ve all seen the images, watched the documentaries and read the news. Our throwaway society and over-reliance on single-use items is contributing to a global climate emergency.
Take plastic as an example, it’s everywhere. Some plastics are used for just a few minutes but stay in the environment. Only a small proportion is recycled globally, with rest ending up in landfill, being dispersed in our soils, rivers and oceans and broken down into tiny plastic particles called ‘microplastics’. We want to build a network of businesses across Wales that are dedicated to the Caru Cymru movement and celebrate the positive actions they’re taking to eliminate litter and waste.
We know there is a lot of advice out there for businesses looking to cut their waste. Some of this advice is great; some is less helpful and potentially misleading. Compostable materials, biodegradables, recycling infrastructure, circular economy – doing the right thing can seem overwhelming!
We want to make it as easy as possible for your business to make a positive difference.
We’re encouraging businesses and organisations to pledge their commitment to four Rs: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle and Repair
We’ve created a handy toolkit, taking inspiration from our friends at Keep Northern Ireland Beautiful who have been encouraging businesses to tackle ‘pointless plastic’ for many years.
More information on how to be part of the solution to reduce your waste can be found on our website.
One recent success story was Newport based Sero Zero Waste, were crowned winners of ‘Retailer of the Year' at The National Environmental Awards 2022 for leading the way in reducing plastic waste. Keep Wales Tidy sponsored this award and was delighted to attend the awards ceremony in Newport on 14 July The duo also bagged the ‘Environmental Entrepreneur Award.’
Sero Zero Waste sells refillable dry whole foods, local produce and other sustainable products at their store in Tredegar House, Newport. The zero-waste shop is helping the Newport community reduce their plastic waste by refilling containers.
Since opening their doors last year, they’ve refilled over 17,000 containers that would have otherwise been disposed of after one use. The sustainable store is educating people to make the switch from single use and seeing positive behaviour change on a local level.
Laura Parry, co-owner of Sero Zero Waste, said:
It's a huge honour to win an award for something like Retailer of the Year. When we set out to create Sero Zero Waste we really focused on what we could do to serve the local community and create a space where they could easily make changes to their plastic consumption. Everything we do is about making plastic free living more convenient and an easier option for everyone, so it feels great to be awarded for doing just that. Honestly if you want to restore your faith in humanity, open a zero-waste shop. Seeing people choose to make small changes every day that result in this kind of impact will absolutely do the trick.
Louise Tambini, Keep Wales Tidy Deputy Chief Executive, presented the award:
It was fantastic to attend The National Environmental Awards and find out about all the worthy winners, including Llangattock Litter Pickers winning the ‘Environmental Community Group’ award.
Our inspiring sponsored category ‘Retailer or the Year’ winners, Sero Zero Waste, are the first zero waste shop in Newport helping the community to reduce their plastic waste.
We’re excited to work with them to promote their business as best practice in plastic reduction and encourage other organisations to put plans in place to consider consumer impact on the environment.
Caru Cymru, a Welsh phrase meaning ‘Love Wales’, is Keep Wales Tidy’s biggest initiative yet in the battle to eradicate litter and waste – and the charity wants to celebrate the positive actions businesses that sign up are taking to eliminate rubbish.
Find out more on Keep Wales Tidy’s website and share progress on social media using #CaruCymru
Caru Cymru has received funding through the Welsh Government Rural Communities – Rural Development Programme 2014-2020, which is funded by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development and the Welsh Government.