Saving the World one bag at a time!

Last week there seemed to have been a very common theme running through Daily Bread.

The Environment!

It all started in last Friday's general meeting. We were discussing our policy on plastic bags. According to The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, 8.5 billion single-use plastic bags were used from major supermarkets in 2014. At Daily Bread we charge 5 pence per plastic bag, and this practice is due to become standard around supermarkets from 5th October this year. Many of our customers bring their own bags with them when shopping and we are usually able to provide cardboard boxes, that our deliveries have arrived in, for others. We also sell cotton bags with our logo on for £1.42 and wonderful long lasting Jute Bags for £2.99.

That weekend, we had an excellent time at the Umbrella Fair, which is a community-run festival held on the Racecourse, encouraging community and environmentalism. It was lovely to see all the activity going on there and people's enthusiasm in addressing issues that affect the environment.

To keep the theme running, almost coincidentally (although perhaps nothing is really coincidence),

Sharon had planned her prayers around the delicate nature of our planet, 'the garden of Eden'. She quoted a passage from the Bible from Genesis, the story of creation; “The Lord God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it”. We took a moment to reflect and asked ourselves if we think mankind is taking care of our beautiful planet.

Sharon's motivation for this theme was her recent holiday to Egypt. She had a wonderful time celebrating her 25th wedding anniversary (Congratulations Sharon & Billy!), but she said that one image remains strong and disturbing in her mind. Her family, along with other holiday makers were on a clear bottomed boat, looking at the amazing coral reef, and a child shouted “Look! It's a jelly fish!”. Everybody laughed, and the parent of the child told her in fact it was not a jelly fish, but a plastic bag. According to www.reuseit.com, 10% of the plastic produced each year ends up in the ocean. Plastic bags cause the death of many marine creatures when animals mistake them for food. This was a shocking incident for Sharon because it was such a contrast to the beauty that she was supposed to be observing in the ocean. Sometimes it hurts to see the truth of what we know and hear every day.

 

Sharon had brought in her cleanest recycling and had written on it some of the things we can do to be more conscious and careful about our impact on the Environment. All of the tips were simple and easy, mostly about being more aware of the impact of each small action we do every day.

I don't think this deep feeling of responsibility is restricted to Daily Bread. Everybody is aware of our very precarious situation and reliance on the environment and we know change is necessary right now. When each of us makes a change it seems so small, we know reform needs to happen on a much higher level, but what about the ripple effect? You throw a pebble into a lake and the ripples spread outwards until it has moved the entire lake.

We know how lucky we are that our work gives us an opportunity to discuss and address these issues and that we have the power to make changes at our workplace. At Daily Bread we are driven by our ethics, and try to be as responsible as we can in as many aspects as possible. Although I talk about this theme recurring last week, as it is often the case when a topic comes up, surrounding events seem to echo and reinforce it, this is an ongoing theme and we will continue to do our best in environmental issues. We appreciate all comments and suggestions from customers, which are discussed in our weekly meetings.

If you are are particularly passionate about the environment and surrounding issues, you may be interested in some of the magazines we stock; Permaculture magazine (£4.95) and Resurgence & Ecologist magazine (£4.95), both of which are packed full of information, creativity and inspiration to carry you on your journey! Happy saving the world!

Kirsty

25/08/15

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