All abuzz about sustainability at Wilson Vale
With the global honey bee population in decline, Wilson Vale has committed to adopting 50 bee hives from the British Beekeepers Association to support vital research into honey bee health and education into good bee husbandry.
“We are doing what we can to support Mother Nature,” said Andrew Wilson, co-founder of Wilson Vale. ‘As big users of quality honey throughout our 85 catering operations nationwide, we feel that this is a great opportunity to support the wonderful work carried out by the British Beekeepers Association.”
The company is taking a step further by actively supporting its client’s beekeeping initiative at Kellogg’s in Manchester. Kellogg’s has partnered with Plan Bee, a leading sustainability company that establishes and manages on-site honeybee hives for businesses seeking unique ways to enhance the environment.
An initial eight honeybee hives are being managed and maintained by Plan Bee for the global food giants at their headquarters and manufacturing plant in Talbot Road, Manchester. The beehives help Kellogg’s to extend their sustainability credentials, an ethos inherited from company founder W.K. Kellogg more than a hundred years ago.
Lynda Percival, Kellogg’s European Environment Manager, said: “Our founder was passionate about health and wellbeing, and sustainability is at the heart of our company. Working with Plan Bee is important to us – we rely on bee pollination for some of our raw ingredients and we know that the bee population is declining, not just in the UK, but globally. By installing bee hives at our UK headquarters and the Manchester factory, we are helping to increase the bee population.
“There is also a novel aspect of having bee hives as this is new to Kellogg’s. It’s already helping with employee engagement as our volunteer bee keepers are really enthusiastic.”
Wilson Vale chef manager, James Wood, and his head chef, Jason Alexander are supporting the initiative, and are even planning to undertake a bee keeping course next year.
Andrew Wilson said: “There are approximately 660 people at the Kellogg’s site so our chefs use the honey from the on-site hives within the staff restaurant and the busy on-site hospitality service for dishes such as honey-glazed gammon ham, honey & mustard salad dressing and honey & banana sponge cake. The ‘Talbot Road’ branded jars of honey are also available to be purchased by employees.
“Our chefs are delighted to be involved in this initiative as it is perfectly in tune with our fresh food and sustainability ethos.”
This news coincides with the launch of Wilson Vale’s latest CSR report, ‘It’s a natural choice’, outlining the company’s wider sustainability initiatives and achievements, such as the use of ‘ugly’ produce for cooked dishes and the company’s on-going commitment to planting trees in the National New Forest for every new client gained.