As a young family business, every day we work hard to be as sustainable as possible, but in the New Year something happened that made us re-evaluate everything we do.
We were cosied on the sofa one night watching David Attenborough’s latest documentary series, Our Planet. If you’ve not had the chance to watch it yet I would thoroughly recommend it – the images are truly stunning!
The kids absolutely loved it. There were vivid pink Flamingos and their fluffy little chicks, birds carpet bombing the ocean and life or death chases through powdery snow. They were rapt and ended up so close to the TV they were in danger of getting square eyes.
But at the end of the episode the tone changed and the focus turned to the Ice Caps. The eldest was heart-broken as he watched a piece of Glacier the size of a skyscraper fall into the sea – it led to lots of tears at bedtime and some very difficult to answer questions.
We’ve tried to make sure everything we do at The Chopping Block minimises our impact to the environment, but when a 7 year old is asking why the world is literally falling apart, you really sit up and listen.
The next day, we started looking at our processes a little closer and, although there will always be room for improvement, we’ve put together a list of what steps we’ll be taking to become a more sustainable business.
What we do now:
We choose to work with the Carlisle family in Lockerbie, who supply our Beef, Lamb and Pork. Not only do they uphold incredibly high welfare standards, but they own the small abattoir where the animals are slaughtered, and it’s just 5 miles down the road from the farm. This minimises the stress on the animals and keeps food miles low.
We wrap our meat and cheese in paper, use recycled paper carrier bags and actively encourage you to bring along your own container to fill with tasty treats.
We recycle all plastic, glass, tin, cardboard and oil that we produce.
We offer a seasonal menu, trying to keep our reliance on imported food down, and champion the meat, cheese and charcuterie you’ll find in our counters.
What we’ll do next:
Move to plastic free burger separators and bio-degradable vac-pack bags.
Look into a renewable electricity plan for the shop.
Continue to actively seek out products and produce that use little or no single use plastic and, where possible, use British producers to reduce food miles.
Contact our meat suppliers to ensure any feed that supplements the animal’s diet is not imported Soy.
We all have a part to play in moving our food chain to a sustainable and fair system. We don’t mind if you buy less meat, or buy it from someone else, but please start asking questions about where it’s come from and how it’s raised. It’s the only way we can force real change in the food industry. We’re trying our best, but we need you to help too – let’s not make any more kids cry.