Greener business: How our industry can lead the way

Greener business

Greener business: How our industry can lead the way

Mandy Jennings, executive director at Venues of Excellence, takes a close look at how Venues of Excellence members are leading by example when it comes to greener business.

Nowadays, we are all more than aware of the urgent need to take better care of the world we live in. This was evident in the wave of hospitality businesses choosing to ban plastic straws earlier this year, in a bid to reduce the estimated 8.5 billion straws that are thrown away annually.

However, this ought to just be the start. Here at Venues of Excellence, we place a big emphasis on greener business, expecting our members to have in place a robust environment policy and to market their green credentials as much as possible.

We see many innovative, green ideas and solutions across our portfolio of venues, from ensuring sustainability and provenance on ingredients on the catering side, working with local charities to reduce food waste and identifying ways to reduce the venue’s carbon footprint by using greener energy sources and technologies.

One example which springs to mind, in particular, is CIM Moor Hall in Maidenhead – the home of the Chartered Institute of Marketing.

The venue, which houses over 30 meeting rooms, has introduced several impressive environmental initiatives to date.

The estimated 58,000 paper cups the venue used in 2017 have been reduced and replaced by ceramic mugs, water fountains and plastic cups have been replaced with glass-bottled water and glasses in all meeting rooms and, on the accommodation side, the venue has installed rainfall showers that mix air with water to give the same volume, but without using as much water.

Another example comes from the team at Unique Venues Birmingham, who have a clear policy across the business to improve environmental performance, introducing innovative measures such as re-using waste paper for notepads (unless it compromises confidentiality.)

A spokesperson for Unique Venues Birmingham, said: “There is a real sustainable event movement happening and we need to ensure as a venue we do not just practice sustainability, but also educate and encourage sustainable choices when it comes to events.

“In the past, event organisers would be satisfied with a basic paragraph in the event venue specs that confirms recycling happens – but today their expectations are evolving.”

We are exceptionally proud of the great work our members are doing to support and protect the world we live in. By leading by example, we can show that through simple changes, our industry can set a precedent for other sectors and for consumers, too, driving change for a greener future.