Why 2024 is the year of sustainability?
In the wake of 2023’s International Sustainability Standards being published, a new era of private business-led sustainable action has been ushered. The new standards provide a global baseline for disclosures, and demand an understanding of how sustainability factors into company prospects.
Therefore, we expect companies to willingly look to disclose their sustainability measures to both partners and customers. And with transparency comes improvement, as businesses look to develop their actions for all to see. 2024 will see increased urgency for sustainable action and better economic decisions.
Yet, sustainability isn’t just limited to eco-friendliness – Sustainability also concerns staffing, ethics, profitability, revenue streams, and other long-term priorities. It’s about making circles, acting wisely and ensuring the long-term success of your business.
Though the greatest impact will be driven by regulation on big businesses, SMEs will need to be seen to be leading the charge. According to the Carbon Trust, UK SMEs make up 44% of the nation’s non-household emissions, and therefore have a responsibility to act.
But surveys indicate that most SMEs are still in the early stages of their journey to net zero, with only basic action taken to reduce the carbon footprint of their operations. At NDML, as part of our mission to assist businesses, we’ve listed below some techniques you could use to make your business more sustainable.
Nightlife Unscripted, with Carla Denyer
We talked to Carla Denyer, Green Party Leader, who was speaking at the event about sustainability in the nightlife economy. We wanted to gauge her unfiltered thoughts as part of our new Nightlife Unscripted series.
Sustainable Actions for Night Time and Hospitality Businesses
Check your supply chain: evaluate the players across your supply chain and explore switching to a more environmentally-friendly alternative where possible.
Support local suppliers: Perhaps decide to buy only meat reared within your region, or make it your mission to use only in-season vegetables from local suppliers.
Switch to clean energy: Making the move to clean sources of energy can make a huge difference to your carbon emissions and overall environmental impact. If this is something you’re considering, be sure to download the SRA’s free toolkit designed to help hospitality businesses in the transition to renewable energy, complete with practical advice and real-life examples.
Water usage: The hospitality industry uses a lot of water every day. Examining where and why your business might be wasting water and finding smart ways to minimise wastage is a resolution worth keeping.
Reduce your food waste: Perhaps the hospitality industry’s biggest faux pas. Consider implementing processes that track food waste, identify where your biggest sources lie and find ways to avoid waste in the first place. Contact your local council to learn about their eco waste removal services.
Staff wellbeing: Making staff wellbeing a priority can make a real difference in people’s day-to-day lives. See our We Are Wellbeing partner for more information and ideas on how to improve staff wellbeing.
Boost your community involvement: Run a workshop, build a safe space, advertise event. Clubs and restaurants play an important cultural role in modern society, functioning as community hubs and ‘third spaces’. Actively strengthening your ties to your local community brings benefits to the area and to your business.
Training and development: All business should always look to improve and train staff. Get involved with the younger generation, offer opportunities at your place of work and help them grow and learn.
A Hospitality Businesses’ Example of Sustainable action in action:
Bristol Dry Gin Distillery have a strong Environmental and Social Responsibility policy. They are pioneers in various ways they can make their brand more sustainable. Some of the actions they have taken include:
Deposit Return Scheme – “We have been running a deposit return scheme with our trade accounts for a number of years, which has proved very successful in both reducing the amount of waste, and associated waste costs, for venues, and decreasing our need for newly manufactured bottles.”
Solar Energy & Efficiency – “We have invested heavily in the latest technology, to reduce our reliance on energy. After conducting an audit of our processes and making each part of our building as efficient as possible, the next step was to start generating our own electricity. “
Local Supply Chains – “One of our greatest joys is finding and using suppliers within the city, from fruit and veg for our fresh botanicals”
Transport – “Deliveries within the city centre are performed on foot, or by electric bike, and further out we use couriers with progressive environmental policies and systems.”
Unfiltered Thoughts From Night Time Industry Leaders
We are talking to high profile decision makers in the hospitality sector and gauging their unfiltered thoughts as part of our new Nightlife Unscripted Series. These videos are freely available and feature leading voices from the night time industry.