The global pandemic has thrown up so much soul searching for us here at Hoyle's. We want to change how we do things here for the better - for our team, our community, supply chain and the wider world around us. If we can encourage other small businesses, suppliers and customers to make positive changes to their own personal and professional habits, so much the better. Here's a few of the ways in which we're trying to make positive change:
We pay the Oxford Living Wage: we pay at least the Oxford Living Wage of £10.31 to all our employees. No ifs, no buts, it's the right thing to do.
We try to de-bias our hiring: we use the brilliant Applied's Job Description Tool to sense check our job descriptions when we hire, to create as fair and unbiased a candidate experience as possible. We also try to make our hours as flexible as possible for candidates with caregiving needs (or any other for that matter).
The Better Business Act: we are proud to support the Better Business Act, a campaign to change UK law to ensure that company directors are responsible for advancing the interests of shareholders alongside those of wider society and the environment. Hundreds of businesses have already signed up to create a cleaner, greener, fairer future for all. Together, we will ask for the government’s leadership to help deliver this new contract between business and society. To find out more, head to www.betterbusinessact.org.
No more plastic bags: we've stopped buying single-use plastic bags. We have a few left still to run through (and we don't want to throw them away - even worse) but as soon as they're gone, they're gone. We're working with the wonderful team at Supreme Creations to replace them with reusable bags in sustainable materials, ethically made. Watch this space...
Reused and repurposed packaging: We try to reuse as many of the boxes sent to us by our suppliers wherever we can, but once they're no longer fit for purpose, we shred them to create padding for online orders heading out - reduces waste, and removes the need for bubble-wrap too.
Kitchen and bathroom supplies: we've started shopping with Goodclub for the everyday kitchen and bathroom supplies we use at Hoyle's - a low impact supplier with lots of great bulk-buy and zero waste options. Even their delivery boxes are returnable to reduce waste. We also get our cleaning stuff (dissolvable sachets so you never need to buy another single use plastic spray bottle) from the brilliant Smol.
Carbon offset - Ecologi: we're working with the carbon-offsetting heroes at Ecologi to plant a tree for every order customers make with us. The company publishes certificates each month showing how many tonnes of CO2 (‘carbon credits’) have been prevented from going into the atmosphere or removed from it. You can see these here. The standards of these projects are certified at the highest level by Gold Standard and their partners are regularly audited by third parties too - you can check out this annual audit for their Madagascan tree planting project.
On a personal note, we individually work with Wren.co to make our own, personal carbon footprints negative for about the cost of a coffee a week. They're a brilliant company and we highly recommend them.
Carbon offset - CarbonClick: we’ve teamed up with the brilliant team at CarbonClick, a company making it easy for people and businesses to help fight climate change. CarbonClick looks like a green button at checkout and if you click it, a small contribution is added to your basket which purchases carbon offsets. These offsets reduce the environmental impact of the carbon emissions related to the purchase. CarbonClick’s offsets fund forest restoration, tree planting, and renewable energy projects around the world. We’re proud to be part of the fight against climate change. We hope you’ll join us in creating a sustainable future, by choosing to CarbonClick with your purchase.
We're a Refill station: we'll refill anybody's water bottle for free (you don't even need to be a customer), to avoid more single-use plastic bottles being bought. See where else is offering the scheme using their app.
Greening the world around us - every little helps: we have a small courtyard behind our shop. Until the lockdown it was full of rubbish and unloved, but we're now turning it into a courtyard garden full of as many pots of pollinator-attracting flowers and herbs as we can fit in the space. Every little helps. Come and see it!