Working to carbon neutrality at The Bay fish and chip shop
The Bay fish and chip shop has made a number of changes to their business to achieve carbon neutrality. This includes investment in energy efficient appliances, reducing food waste, and working more closely with suppliers to reduce plastic waste and carbon emissions. The Bay is based in Stonehaven in the northeast of Scotland and is focused on serving locally-sourced and sustainable seafood.
Over more than two decades Chef Director Calum Richardson, has taken the business on a sustainability journey which has seen The Bay reach carbon neutrality.
I opened my first fish and chip shop in 1997 and although sustainability was always important, the way we approach the topic has changed over time. Sustainability isn’t just about fish stocks and responsible sourcing anymore, for our business it covers everything from waste management to our carbon footprint.
Minimising carbon emissions is now seen as a key aspect of environmental sustainability. To tackle this challenge The Bay has made a number of changes including better management of food waste, moving to recyclable packaging, installing energy efficient fryers, eliminating the use of polystyrene fish boxes, and reducing water usage.
Our interest in sustainability was given a boost through membership of the Sustainable Restaurant Association (SRA). We joined the SRA in 2011 and asked to undergo a sustainability audit immediately. The result of that is that The Bay was awarded a two-star sustainability rating badge. Even though this was a great result it motivated us even more to identify areas where we could improve further.
As a result of changes made The Bay has now been awarded a three-star sustainability rating badge through the SRA.
To date The Bay has undertaken two independent carbon emissions audits to better understand the business’s emissions profile and identify carbon hotspots. The most recent audit estimated the carbon footprint of The Bay at 254g of CO2 equivalent for one meal of fish and chips, this is compared to the UK average carbon footprint of 1,100g CO2 equivalent per meal.
In addition to the economic benefit of improving efficiency and reducing waste, the reputational impact of maintaining high environmental is a key benefit for The Bay.
Telling our story is really important. We want customers to know about the good work we are doing to improve our environmental credentials. This helps assure our customers that they are buying a high-quality, sustainable and premium product.
Tacking climate change through minimising carbon emissions is increasingly on the agenda for businesses from all sectors and of all sizes, and a range of support is available.
It’s important to view sustainability as a journey that we are all on together. Something comes from every sustainability idea, even if it might not seem immediately relevant. Building networks and sharing knowledge is very important and makes sure that the entire industry is moving in the right direction.
For more information on The Bay’s sustainability story please visit the website using the link below.