In 2020 we proudly achieved B Corp certification following an assessment of our ethical & environmental standards, as well as our business practices. Thanks to the B Corp community we have been part of the B Corp Climate Collective, which is committed to net zero by 2030.
We are happy to announce that the carbon footprint data, we have been working on, is ready to be shared with the public. This is a BIG step up to net zero.
This year we have made great strides in our environmental journey, working with our newly appointed Sustainability Coordinator to calculate our carbon footprint for the very first time. This report measured scope 1, 2 & 3 emissions, which take into account not only our direct emissions, but also the emissions from the full supply chain, from bean to cup to end-of-life. The data refers to our latest financial year (Feb 2022 - Jan 2023), we will be using this as our baseline year to continue reducing our emissions and hold ourselves accountable.
We’ve created these handy infographics to help you visualise what our current environmental impact looks like - check them out!
Looking for more? See below for more detailed context of how we approach this data.
As seen also in our carbon footprint sheets, scope 3 usually takes up the largest portion of emissions. Because scope 3 entails all emissions of the supply chain from the production to the end of the life of the product (waste disposal).
Our supply chain is quite long, so where do the biggest chunks of emissions come from in coffee? Contrary to what most people think, it is not freight emissions but production that has the highest emissions output, this partly comes from the type of fertiliser and pesticides being used. This is why organically grown coffee is always more sustainable. If you want to read more about this, we have written a blog about it.
While calculating the carbon footprint we stumbled upon a few issues that we would like to share with you. Whilst this is a huge progress in terms of how we shifted our perception even further to an environmental angle because it made our business activities much more tangible, we want to talk about the lack of data we were facing when calculating the carbon footprint.
This is an industry-wide issue and we are sure even a business-wide one. Within the coffee industry over 130 millions bags of green coffee are produced across almost 60 countries, all ranging from different farming practices. These various methods give coffee their unique characteristics in flavour profiling. Therefore, any estimation of carbon data can only relate to one specific process at one specific farm in a specific location, which is just not possible. The data we used here is from peer reviewed research using their results to estimate what our emissions from all our green coffee bought could look like. For us as a small business this is currently enough, especially because this is all voluntary and not required information yet by regulatory bodies. We truthfully communicate this because we are interested in what we can do as a micro-lot roaster and where we can do better.
So, despite the lack of data, we think this is still huge progress in our journey. We learned a lot from creating this baseline year of our emissions, and now have a clear picture of where our emissions lie within our business. This allowed us to identify where we can play an influential role directly or indirectly, pushing ourselves, suppliers and customers forward.
This can mean looking at our freight emissions as well as packaging and waste management. Any emissions we can reduce, we will.
If you want to know more about our actions towards reducing, go check out our impact page.
Green coffee carbon calculators are wildly inaccurate - United Baristas