Establishing a new company in 2021, I would be remiss to not consider first and foremost the environmental impact that the company will have. In a world, considered by many to be on the precipice of irreversible damage it is our duty, at the very least, to leave zero impact, and where possible, to be a cause for some positive change.
I would love to say that the day-to-day business activities of a coffee trader are carbon neutral, but sadly this isn’t the case. Much of our business activities are a necessity – from airfreighting samples from origin to roasters, travel to origin to establish relationships and foster positive partnerships to simply turning the lights on in our office – everything has an ‘environmental’ cost to it.
In the early stages of our business, our pledge is simple: To ensure that Maverick Coffee Trading does not increase the Carbon Footprint of supplying our coffee between point of purchase and point of sale. This means we need to invest in projects around the globe to balance the effect of moving coffee from origin to destination.
Researching climate projects brings an overwhelming response. Often tree planting projects are leading the way in terms of simple carbon offset. It is true, that much of the world’s habitat has been lost and continues to be lost to deforestation and the natural remedy would be to replant more trees to sequester more Co2. We at Maverick agree in part with this, and plan to engage in tree planting projects in part to offset the climate cost of our supply chain. Unfortunately figures vary greatly as to what number of trees need planting to offset the carbon emitted, and this alone may not be enough to mitigate the costs. With a rough estimate of over 1mt of CO2 emitted per container shipped from origin to destination, some reports suggest anywhere as low as 6 trees to over 100 trees are needed to be planted to offset this. The type of tree and location it is planted all are factors at play here.
Tree planting is not the only project to invest in though as it does not focus on reducing emissions, but only absorbing them. It is therefore also prudent to invest in projects that actively aim to reduce the amount of CO2 emitted in the first place – cleaner fuel systems, lower our reliance on highly pollutant industries (livestock production and commercial fishing springs to mind)
We will achieve this by implementing the following:
- Sourcing from preferred suppliers who are actively committed to their own CO2 reduction projects.
- Offsetting our CO2 emissions by supporting tree planting schemes globally.
- Investing in community projects in origin that deliver a reduced CO2 output (eco Cookers)
- Consider our own personal CO2 footprint with travel by public transport where possible, low energy bulbs, paperless office and green energy providers.
Each year, Maverick will conduct an annual assessment of our impact. Looking at contracts, coffees shipped, trips taken and using verified methods, calculate the total amount of CO2 that we have contributed to. Using this calculation, we will then take the appropriate action to negate this.
Our long term goal is for our entire supply chain to be 100% carbon neutral; from Cherry on a tree to point of consumption. This will require an enormous amount of focus from all partners in our chain to achieve, but one that we are convinced can be realized.